THE Health and Safety Authority (HSA) has published a revised version of the âCode of Practice for Preventing Injury and Occupational Ill-Health in Agriculture' (Farm Safety Code of Practice).
The original code, published in 2006, comprised of four items, a general guidance document, a risk assessment document, a Safe System of Work Plan (SSWP) document and a DVD. The revised code comprises of just two documents â a general guidance document and a working risk assessment document.
The revised code performs the same function as the original. It has been developed to reflect technical progress in the sector, changes in farming practice, equipment and accident trends.
The additional features include specific sections for âSlurry Handling' and âHarvesting'. There are updated references to legislation and guidance, updated imagery and a section on how to understand and use new chemical symbols.Â
There are also new recommendations and approaches to farm building maintenance.
Martin O'Halloran, Chief Executive of the HSA said: âThe farm safety code of practice is the cornerstone of farm safety, health and wellbeing so when we set out to revise it we wanted to make it more reflective of modern farming. We also wanted to make it easier for farmers to use. The revised code focuses in on the most common hazards and provides workable solutions that can be put in place with minimal to zero cost.'
Professor Gerry Boyle, Director of Teagasc commented: âWe have collaborated closely with the HSA on this and it was important to us that whatever came out of the process was an improvement on the existing code. This update has definitely achieved that and it will be of huge benefit to educators and advisors in the farming sector.'
The revised COP will help farmers meet their duties under the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005 and came into operation on Saturday, July 1st, 2017. The old version will be phased out over a period of 18 months.
Visit www.hsa.ie to download free copy of the new Code of Practice.