HSE inspections 'will soon begin' on UK farms
Farmers told they must pay closer attention to how workplace risk is managed or face serious penalties.
The Health and Safety Executive’s (HSE) programme of inspections reviews health and safety standards on farms across the country, and the industry is being reminded that the inspections will soon begin.
Inspections will ensure those responsible for protecting their workers and themselves are doing the right things to comply with the law and prevent death and injury in the workplace, or related ill-health. If they are not HSE will not hesitate to use enforcement to bring about improvements.
Throughout the inspection initiative, inspectors will be checking that risks, in specific area are being controlled, including:
- Falls from height
The announcement follows a series of compliance events that were developed as a result of research into farmers attitudes to risk and are aimed at changing behaviours in the industry. Farmers in the areas were given the opportunity to attend one of these events, paid for by HSE, to help them comply with the law and prepare for inspections. HSE is now following up to make sure that all farms in the area are doing the right thing.
Agriculture has the poorest record of any industry in Britain for health and safety, and latest figures show that 33 people were killed in agriculture across Britain in 2017/18 - around 18 times more than the all industry fatal injury rate.
HSE’s head of agriculture, Rick Brunt, commented positively that:
“We are seeing signs of a change in attitude across the farming industry and while this is encouraging, these inspections act as a reminder to farmers of the importance of managing risks so that everyone can go home from their work healthy.
“Everyone involved in farming has a role to play. Those working in the industry need to understand the risks they face and the simple ways they can be managed. Those that work with the industry can be part of the change that is so badly needed.
“Farmers, managers and workers are reminded that death, injuries and cases of ill-health are not an inevitable part of farming.”