The Minister for State at the Department of Agriculture is to open a Farm Safety Conference at the Talbot Hotel in Clonmel tomorrow. Minister Martin Heydon has made Farm Safety a key priority and secured funding to establish a Farm Safety unit in the Department. There were 12 fatalities on Irish farms last year making it the sector with the highest number of fatalities – a total of 26 workplace fatalities were recorded nationwide in 2022.
The Conference (10.30am – 1pm) will showcase the value of peer to peer mentoring in addressing Farm Safety, Health and Wellbeing. The pilot project was carried out by Irish Rural Link in partnership with the BRIDE (Biodiversity Regeneration in a Dairying Environment) project, the Duncannon Blue Flag Farming & Communities Scheme, the New Futures Farming Group, and the Health and Safety Authority. Farmers were able to visit other farms and identify safety risks – Minister Heydon feels that because the farm workplace is also home some farmers can become blind to some risks and hazards.
The Minister will also visit the Tipperary Whiskey Distillery and meet with representatives of both North and South Tipperary IFA in Cashel and the Horse and Jockey.
Minister Heydon says government action on fertiliser prices is difficult as market forces dictate the price – the Minister did express concern for potential damage to soil if an appropriate mix of fertiliser was not used. Speaking to Tipp Mid West Radio the Minister says that before the Dáil passes any further legislation in respect of Dog Control an examination of the existing enforcement mechanisms is required – this includes Local Authority Vets, Dog Wardens and local Dog Pounds.Full details of the Farmers4Safety conference can be found here