Dave Gratton, New Zealand Tree Grower May 2005.
OSH and ACC statistics tell us that farming, forestry, fishing and construction are the major industries with the highest death and injury statistics in New Zealand.
Agriculture statistics show that eleven farmers are seriously injured every day, with one farmer being killed every two weeks.
When you add the agriculture and forestry potential for harm to our farm forestry activities, then you realise the injury potential we face each and every day.
Farmsafe awareness is the foundation programme, designed to heighten your awareness of injury prevention and help make your farm a safer place. The one-day workshop will give you practical advice on common injuries and what can be done to avoid them.
The programme includes identifying potential dangers involving animals, machinery, slips and trips. By identifying and addressing potential hazards, the course will help you to develop an action plan to address them. The Farmsafe course is free and lunch is provided.
We must improve
At industry health and safety meetings, the view of OSH is that people with formal qualifications are deemed to be competent, and unqualified people are therefore deemed to be incompetent. Your representative at these meetings has countered this reasoning. They say that some people with written qualifications are hopeless in the actual workplace, while farm foresters who may have no formal qualifications but do have enormous practical experience in what they do, are therefore more than competent in the job.
We all must improve ourselves in our business, and completing a Farmsafe workshop is an excellent way to start. Get together with farm forestry friends and help each other in attending this one-day workshop. For more information go to the Farmsafe Awareness website.