Agriculture students attended a seminar on Farm safety in the Teagasc Kildalton Agricultural College. “Champions for Safety” seminar saw the 129 green certificate agriculture students in Kildalton College addressed by specialists from FBD Insurance plc, the Health and Safety Authority (HSA) and the ESB. This seminar is organised annually prior to commencing their first period of farm placement on 14th October.
Ms Ann Doherty, a farmer from south Kilkenny addressed the seminar with her touching account of how she was attacked by a bull. She outlined the life changing effects that this accident has had on her life and the struggles she continually faces on a daily basis as a consequence of this farm accident.
John McNamara, Teagasc Farm Safety Specialist stressed the importance of vigilance for students throughout their work placement period. He particularly highlighted the importance of student safety when driving quads on farms. He also stated that on-going adoption of safe work behaviour, in addition to on-going removal of farm hazards, is the key to minimising farm accident risk.
Contributions from Ciaran Roche, FBD Insurance plc, David Barry, HSA and Arthur Byrne, ESB, demonstrated the fallout from farm accidents and the long lasting effects that accidents have on a farming family. ‘It’s not an accident that accidents happen was the central theme running through the seminar’.
Closing the seminar, Principal of Teagasc Kildalton Agricultural College, Tim Ashmore thanked the student participants for their input into the conference and urged the students to become Champions for farm safety. He also stated: ‘We take farm safety very seriously in Kildalton College and ensure all our students receive quad induction training, machinery operation assessments, manual handling and risk assessment training before their placements commence’.
It is planned to hold a “Champions for Safety” seminar at other Agricultural Colleges over the coming weeks. The seminar series is sponsored by FBD Insurance plc.
Ms Ann Doherty has described her accident as part of the HSA Survivor Series. It can be viewed at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HOSdYPRUIEY