Simple but often overlooked safety tips can help farmers avoid accidents during the hectic harvest period.

Pressure and stress on farmers at harvest can be a dangerous combination, says Phil Bates, senior policy and technical adviser at the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health.


“This is the crunch time – it’s make or break,” he says. “This is when all the profits can be made from all the hard work they’ve invested throughout the year.”

“It really is a case of making hay while the sun shines.

“They’ve got to get that crop in before the weather changes – before the market changes. So there is a huge amount of pressure involved.”

Because it is such a busy time – involving a lot of machinery – many farm accidents involve people getting run over or becoming trapped in equipment.

But taking a few minutes to think about what you’re doing can prevent accidents, says Mr Bates, who urges farmers to adopt what he calls the “safe-stop” procedure.

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