According to Farmsafe Australia Inc, around 20 children under 15 years of age are fatally injured on an Australian farm every year and many more are hospitalised or treated by General Practitioners across rural Australia.
The major causes of child deaths and injuries on farms are dams, farm vehicles, machinery, motorcycles and horses. Age and development characteristics also place children at greater risk.
A study of on-farm fatalities from 2001-2004 by the Australian Centre for Agricultural Health and Safety found that children (0-14yrs) make up 15-20% of farm injury deaths and around 66% are male.
The main agents of fatality and serious injury are:
- Drowning in dams (mostly under five-year-olds)
- Quad Bikes or four-wheeled motorbikes, and
- Farm vehicles (cars, utes)
- Around 25% of all child deaths were visitors to the farm, but for quad bikes, around 50% are visitors.
- Drowning accounts for around 35-40% on child farm deaths, with farm dams being by far the most common site.
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