Agriculture gets new health and safety standards

New health and safety qualifications aimed at people working in farming have been recognised by the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA).

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) initiative – vocational qualifications (VQs) for health and safety in agriculture – are the first such qualifications designed specifically for the farming industry.

It is hoped they will pave the way for a new generation of training courses to tackle the industry’s poor health and safety record.

Last year 47 people were killed in farm-related accidents, and many more suffered serious injury or ill health.

In the past five years 231 people have died, including nine children under the age of 16.

HSE has developed the qualifications with the help of a number of organisations, including the National Farmers’ Union and the Transport and General Workers’ Union, and bodies for the land-based sector such as Lantra and the NPTC, and the QCA.

“The farming industry’s health and safety record is poor, and these VQs are aimed at anyone working in the industry, from farm workers to supervisors and managers,” said HSE inspector Alastair Mitchell.

“These qualifications should help improve the education, skills and competences of the workforce and contribute towards making farms safer places to work.”


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