Tractor lighting: stay safe by getting it right discusses the importance of maintaining adequate lighting on tractors, especially during the busy summer season.

A loaded weapon

As mentioned in this blog a couple of weeks ago, we are all spending more time on our tractors during these long summer days. There is hay and silage to make, animals to move, turf to be brought home. There is a mountain of work that can’t be done without machinery. That is why it is so important that we go the extra mile in observing all necessary safety precautions. Every time that we climb into the cab, we should remind ourselves that tractors are responsible for 50% of farming-related fatalities. In terms of our approach, we should view tractors and other farm machinery just as we would view a loaded weapon.

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Spending a lot of time on the tractor? Mind your back! discusses how spending a lot of time driving a tractor can be harmful to the lower back, and offers farmers some advice on how to reduce risk this silage season.

A physically demanding profession

The number of farmers who complain of back pain during this time of year is always very high. If you, personally, haven’t experienced persistent aching in the lower back, you almost certainly know a farmer who has. Now, there are many possible causes of back pain. Farming is a physically demanding profession, after all, and entails many activities that are potentially harmful to the back muscles. Tasks such as pitching and lifting heavy weights are notoriously hard on this part of the body.

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Stuck behind farm machinery on the road? Take it easy!

Traffic behind tractor advises road users to relax when stuck behind slow-moving farm machinery this summer. 

It’s silage season – know what to expect on Irish roads?

If you live in a rural area or took a drive into the countryside over the last few weeks, chances are you’ve spent some time driving behind heavy machinery. Tractors are a frequent sight on Irish roads at all times of the year, but the summer months see a sharp increase in the volume of moving machinery in public spaces. With the silage season well underway, you will encounter large tractors carrying mowers and bale lifters, or towing balers and wrappers, every few kilometres on most journeys.    Continue reading “Stuck behind farm machinery on the road? Take it easy!”

Children on farms: Let’s keep them safe this summer

Farm Safety 001As summer weather finally reaches Ireland, reminds farmers of the importance of meeting high child safety standards on Irish farms.

The reprehensible few

Farming friends, it’s time to talk about child safety. Now, I understand that many of you are sick of the media pontification on this issue. It is important to acknowledge that most of us are already conscious of the dangers that a busy farm poses, especially to small children; and that we do everything in our power to protect our families from moving machinery, livestock and other hazards. Unfortunately, though, there will always be those few who make reckless decisions, who forget about the danger, don’t see it, or ignore it for a variety of reasons. This problem doesn’t seem to be going away. Worse still, over the last couple of years we have seen a spike in social media videos depicting extremely dangerous and, frankly, idiotic behaviour on Irish farms. It is bad enough to put ourselves needlessly into harm’s way for 5 seconds of fame; but to put children and teenagers in danger for the sake of a few views on Youtube or Facebook is beyond reprehensible. Continue reading “Children on farms: Let’s keep them safe this summer”