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14 August 2018 | Online since 2003


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13 July 2017 10:12:04 |Agri Safety and Rural Crime,Arable,News

Farmers urged to take extra care during this year's harvest


Farmers and agricultural workers are being urged to take care when working close to power lines

Farmers and agricultural workers are being urged to take care when working close to power lines

Farmers will be looking to make the most of the fine weather as the harvest season approaches – but working in agriculture comes with dangers too.
Farmers and agricultural workers are being urged to take care when working close to power lines and other electrical equipment, at one of the farming calendar’s busiest times of the year.
According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), agriculture is Britain's most dangerous industry.
Although only 1.5 per cent of the working population is employed in agriculture, four people were killed in the UK last year and many more were injured when they come into contact with overhead power lines and cables.
With this in mind, UK Power Networks is asking farmers and agricultural workers to be vigilant when working out in the fields.
Safety experts from the company are visiting country fairs and shows to reinforce the safety message.
'Serious injury'
Farm workers are being urged to take care when they are ploughing, using irrigation pipes and ladders, using combine harvesters, loading or unloading vehicles, using tipper wagons or trailers in fields or stacking materials.
If a piece of machinery or equipment gets too close to or comes into contact with an overhead cable, electricity will be conducted through the metal machine or equipment to earth.
It may also pass through anyone who is touching it. Electricity can also arc – jump across gaps – so farm workers do not have to actually touch the lines to get a serious or fatal shock.
Ros Forbes, the power firm’s public safety and education adviser said: “Working near an electricity supply network, whether substations, underground cables or overhead lines, can place employers and employees at risk of serious injury if they don’t take care.
“We want farmers to be extra vigilant and be aware of the potential risks. Accidents often happen when people are tired - for example, at the end of a long day. Taking these simple precautions can help significantly reduce the risk of death or serious injury. “




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