Keeping children safe on farms this summer

Sheffield Occupational Health and Safety Association (SOHSA) on 2008-07-01 07:54:25

With schools in Scotland breaking up for the summer holidays, the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is reminding parents and farmers of the need to keep children safe on farms. Whether it is a visit to a farm, or farmers’ children working during the holidays, it is important to make sure that sensible precautions are taken to prevent a tragedy. HSE Principal Agriculture Inspector Cheryl Anthony commented: “Many people enjoy a visit to a farm with their children during the school holidays. Many forget that farms are a working environment, and there are dangers to look out for. Similarly, children working or living on farms must be protected from the risk of death or serious injury. “The country presents many dangers for children. Forty-five children and young people have died and more than 400 have been seriously injured on farms in Great Britain in the past ten years. “Tractors and other farm machinery are obvious dangers, and so is some livestock. Climbing up ladders and onto bales of straw can lead to falls, grain stores are places where children can be suffocated and barns are often full of highly flammable material. Children can easily drown in slurry lagoons or come into contact with dangerous chemicals. “Hygiene is important too when children are around animals. There have been a number of outbreaks of E coli 0157 involving children associated with educational and recreational visits to farms. “All these risks are real but are readily controlled by simple everyday measures such as ensuring potential hazards are kept secure and are well signposted, making sure everyone is aware of them and supervising children. Further Information & Guidance: A wide range of resources are available in's Web Links directory and within the Safety Forum, or click here to visit the HSE Agriculture and Farming Website - Full URL:

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