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Engaging new videos deliver a serious message on farm safety

Media Release
21 January 2019

An engaging new video series by SafeWork SA aims to improve safety and awareness in the agriculture industry by focusing on the most common causes of injuries on our farms.

The nature and type of work carried out on farms makes agriculture one of the most dangerous industries to work in, accounting for 19% of workplace deaths between 2015 and 2017 despite employing just 4.5% of South Australia’s workforce.

SafeWork SA Executive Director, Martyn Campbell, said the farm safety videos were part of a broader education campaign aimed at reducing injuries in the agriculture industry.

“We recognise that farms are unique and complex workplaces, primarily because they’re also the family home.

“Too often farm incidents involve the most experienced farmer – Dad – which obviously has an enormous impact on the family. Yet most of these incidents are preventable.

“That’s why our new farm safety videos, covering tractor safety, near misses, and child safety, aim to deliver a serious safety message in a family-friendly way.

“I hope that farming kids watch these videos and it starts the conversation that could save a life.

“Our message is clear – don’t let a shortcut or complacency stop you from going home safe at the end of the day.”

The video series was developed in 2018 following three tractor-related fatalities in just seven weeks1, prompting SafeWork SA to undertake an intensive education campaign focused on farm safety.

Background

In addition to the videos, SafeWork SA have developed the following resources:

  • Agriculture Industry Action Plan – outlining SafeWork SA’s commitment to reducing injuries in the sector.
  • Farm chemical safety video series – covering purchasing and delivery, storage, Personal Protective Equipment, chemical mixing and use, and spillage and disposal.
  • Farmers’ Guidebook – providing a comprehensive resource aimed at helping farmers understand their legal responsibilities, as well as offering practical solutions to common health and safety issues.

Further information

In 2018, advisors attended South Australia’s four regional Agricultural and Rural Field Days and conducted 18 free Farm Safety Workshops, speaking to farming communities in Berri, Ceduna, Cleve, Gumeracha, Kapunda, Karoonda, Keith, Kimba, Lobethal, Loxton, Lucindale, Millicent, Mintaro, Mount Barker, Mount Gambier, Nuriootpa, Port Lincoln, Quorn, Riverland, Roxby Downs, Whyalla, and the Yorke Peninsula.

In mid-2018 SafeWork SA WHS Inspectors undertook a safety audit of portable field bins following reports of workers sustaining serious injuries after being struck in the head by the lever mechanism while raising and lowering the bins. The audit also looked at grain silos following a near-miss incident in June 2018 when a silo collapsed.


1. Tractor fatalities: Willunga 19 April, Tanunda 30 April, and Tarlee 04 June