The tables were turned on NFU Mutual communications executive Tim Price, a Member of the Guild, when he became the subject – rather than organiser – of a press photo shoot held at the Livestock Event to publicise the Farm Safety First campaign.
Squeezed painfully into a pair of Size 6 red wellies, Tim posed with a collection of wellingtons and members of the campaign team to help get the message across that safety needs to be the number one priority for farmers and their employees.
“Health & Safety Executive statistics show that farmers and agricultural workers still face one of the highest rates of death and serious injury of any industry in Great Britain,” says Tim. “Our own research suggests that more than 10,000 people a month come close to an accident that might cause physical harm when at work on a farm or in an agricultural setting.”
While this research, based on a survey of 1500 people, highlights incidents that did not lead to injury, it does show there are too many near misses for comfort, suggests Tim.
“Sooner or later, your luck will run out,” he emphasises. “It highlights the importance for everyone working on farms to put safety first.”
The NFU Mutual communications team has a lot of material available to Members of the Guild willing to help raise awareness of the campaign and its aims – including keyring miniatures of the giant boots displayed at several agricultural events this year.
“We’re calling for campaign Ambassadors to tell their real-life stories about accidents and safety incidents on farms,” says Tim. “We’re also providing people with simple safety tips and hope that the Farm Safety First campaign will become the catalyst for farmers to review their health and safety practices.”
As the campaign tee-shirt slogan asks, in the event of a serious accident: “Who would step into your boots?”