National Federation of Young Farmers' Clubs

Fun, Learning, and Achievement

20 July 2017

The tragic death of a Devon FYFC member in March triggered a new farm safety initiative that has the potential to save up to three lives a year.

Devon’s pioneering scheme called Growing Safer Farmers, which was featured on BBC Countryfile on Sunday 23 July, involves machinery dealers and mechanics producing advisory notices to flag up any safety issues on PTO shafts and providing a discount for an annual health check on PTO shafts.

The idea came about after 20-year-old Lauren Scott – a member of Devon FYFC - was sadly killed in a farm accident.

“In spite of the health and safety training the county has organised, in the last 14 years five members have been killed or seriously injured and it’s just too many,” said Nick. “We found out about Lauren while we were at the South West Area weekend, which made it even more shocking as so many members were together at the time. It’s just a waste of a young life.”

Devon’s aim is to get the big manufacturers on board to influence their dealerships to use the safety paperwork. So far in Devon, over 20 dealers and mechanics have agreed to the scheme, and the County is now in the process of gathering feedback from participants on how well it has worked.

“We are potentially going to save two to three lives every year. A thousand pieces of machinery will be safer because they will be in a good state of repair. It’s got to be a winner,” said Nick. 

Photo courtesy of Emily Fleur


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