Farming still the most dangerous industry

Agriculture is still one of the most dangerous  areas to work, according to the latest figures released by the Health and Safety Executive.
While there has been a drop in serious accidents in the workplace overall, farming continues to resist this trend with 375 major injuries reported in 2012/13, only one less than the previous year.

Taken as a whole, there are 78.5 injuries per 100,000 employees in the workplace but farming alone has 239.4 major injuries per 100,000.

That’s more than construction, which has 156.0 major injuries per 100,000 employees, making farming one of the most dangerous professions.
The HSE also points out that the proportion of injuries actually being reported in agriculture is low, so the actual rate is likely to be much higher.

The agricultural sector is also the riskiest for fatal injury. In 2012/13, 29 people in farming died, this accounts for one in five of all fatal injuries to all workers.
Amongst all workers in agriculture who were fatally injured in 2012/13, half were farmers and another 17% were farm workers.

Although fatal accidents in farming have come down over the past 15 years, the rate is still well above any other industry.

The most common types of injuries seen in agriculture are a result of contact with moving machinery, injury from moving vehicles and animals.

Graeme Walker, head of HSE’s agriculture sector said, “Work place health and safety figures demonstrate that the agricultural industry has maintained improvements to health and safety standards in the last twelve months but there is still much to do to reduce deaths and serious injuries.

“Too many lives continue to be lost or damaged. We need to work together to make sure farmers make it home to their families safely each day.”

For more on this topic

See our health and safety page

For a full report on the 2012/13 HSE statistics, go the Health and Safety Executive site