Farm safety in the spotlight

16 Jan, 2018 12:00 PM
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Jenny and Graeme Cope have introduced a number of safety measures on their farm.
What we have found is that our staff are becoming more aware.
Jenny and Graeme Cope have introduced a number of safety measures on their farm.

DAIRYFARMERS Jenny and Graeme Cope have driven a raft of changes to farm safety on their Gippsland farm with the help of Dairy Australia’s Farm Safety Starter Kit.

The couple milks 750 cows at Fish Creek, Victoria.

With five full-time workers and other part-timers, safety on the busy operation is of utmost importance.

“I had noticed things like workers speeding on quad bikes and safety equipment not being used at times with bikes and that got us started,” Mrs Cope said.

The couple then decided to attend a Women in Dairy discussion group session on farm safety where they could learn more about their employer obligations under WorkSafe Victoria from the Agriculture Inspector.

From there the couple reviewed safety strategies using the Dairy Australia Farm Starter Safety Kit following direction from a consultant.

This resulted in a number of changes including:

• Quad bike induction process outlining speed limits and no-go zones.

• Signs reinforcing speed limits.

• Operator Protective Devices on all quad bikes.

• New helmets for quad-bike users.

• More communication among farm staff.

• Paint and tape on pipes and other low-hanging items in the dairy.

“What we have found is that our staff are becoming more aware and thinking things through before they do certain activities,” Mrs Cope said.

“We are also a Focus Farm and we have found that other farmers involved with that are taking the message to their own farms which is positive.” D

More information on the Farm Safety Starter Kit can be found at website www.thepeopleindairy.org.

au/farmsafety or contact local Regional Development Programs.

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