The importance of farm safety: Changing attitudes can save lives

With Farm Safety Week in full swing, CLA encourages entire industry to put safety first this harvest
Tractor in the field sowing seed
Vehicle-related incidents are the major cause of death when looking at the five-year average, according to the HSE's latest statistics.

With Farm Safety Week in full swing, the CLA is encouraging the entire industry to put safety first this harvest.

The rate of fatal injuries in the agricultural sector remains one of the highest of all major industries, with 27 people killed as a result of farming and other related activities in 2022-23.

Gavin Lane, Country Land and Business Association Vice President and Chair of the Farm Safety Partnership, said: “There are no excuses for ignoring the importance of farm safety. Good safety practice doesn’t need to involve spending money, it’s about having a common sense approach to preventing accidents from happening.

“Farmers work long hours and tiredness can easily set in, so taking adequate breaks is very important – as is checking and re-checking equipment throughout the year.

“It’s not always easy, but there needs to be a shift away from old behaviours and attitudes towards good safety practice. Too many people are dying and being injured each year – and nobody is immune to the problem. Everyone, from landowner to tenant, from estate manager to farm hand, needs to put safety first this harvest.”

This week is the eleventh anniversary of Farm Safety Week. The main aim is to raise awareness of the industry’s persistently poor safety record and highlight what is being done to address it.

Use the hashtag #FarmSafetyWeek to follow the conversation on social media, follow @yellowwelliesuk on Twitter or visit the Yellow Wellies website.

Read and watch more on farm safety
  • Pre-harvest checks: the need for a health and safety mindset - ahead of harvest, we find out how two CLA members are improving farm safety. Read more.

  • In this video, CLA Director of External Affairs Jonathan Roberts and Vice President Gavin Lane sit down to consider how the government and farming industry can improve safety measures for all. Watch the short video here.