Keeping kids safe on the farm is vital

NEARLY one in five (15 per cent) fatalities on a farm are children who are under the age of 15.
Keeping kids safe on the farm is vital Keeping kids safe on the farm is vital Keeping kids safe on the farm is vital Keeping kids safe on the farm is vital Keeping kids safe on the farm is vital

Farmsafe Australia's campaign focuses on teaching the importance of safe practices on farms.

Staff writer

More staggering is that more than half (56 per cent) of the fatalities had no active supervision by an adult at the time of the incident.

Following the launch of National Farm Safety Week on Sunday, Farmsafe Australia is shining a spotlight on the importance of adopting more effective risk management practices to protect the next generation of farmers.

This year's campaign highlights the key safety risks that are most prevalent throughout the life of a farmer, aligning with the theme, ‘Farm Safety Through The Ages - From 2 to 92'.

Farmsafe Australia hopes that by providing greater access to information and sparking conversations around farm safety, it will reduce the likelihood of injury, illness and fatalities associated with agricultural production among all generations.

Executive Officer of Farmsafe Australia, Stevi Howdle, said children are natural learners who mirror the behaviours of their role models, which is why it is it essential to always adopt safe and responsible farming practices.

"There is no doubt that our children love to be involved in the everyday work on a family farm, and it is a wonderful opportunity for personal learning and growth," Howdle said.

"But what our farming communities must do better is construct a safer and less risky environment that supports this growth through active supervision by a responsible adult and age-appropriate activities. 

"Farm safety is about better children education that explains to our kids why they are unable to participate in certain activities or be situated in specific areas on the farm. By setting clean and consistent boundaries, such as safe play areas, ‘no-go zones' and instilling a ‘safety always' culture, farming families can immediately improve the environment safety at every stage of growth, without dampening the enjoyment of a rich farming lifestyle.

"We need to allow kids to be kids on farm, while ensuring they're as safe as possible. It's a real balance," he said.

Farmsafe Australia's initiatives are based upon the philosophy that the primary responsibility for farm safety rests with individual farmers, farm works and their families.

For more information on farm safe practices visit https://www.farmsafe.org.au/

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