October is Safe Work month in Queensland, a time when as industries and individuals we take the time to reflect and consider how our actions and inaction impact upon our workplace safety. The state government’s radio, print and online campaign on ag safety is one such campaign that should make all in the agricultural sector stop and consider the importance of workplace safety on their farms.
As a sector we should welcome continued government, industry and community discussion on how we all can do better. Openness about the realities of work safety is essential in addressing bad practice and changing entrenched cultural attitudes to farm safety. Sadly in our sector you don’t have to talk to too many people to uncover stories of on farm incidents and tragedy. It is heartening however to see that in recent years improvements have been made throughout the sector.
The major theme of the ad safety campaign emphasises the disproportionate number of agricultural workplace deaths and injuries. While it is important than we acknowledge this figure, it is also important to recognise that vast improvements have been made. Over the last five years, there has been a consistent annual reduction in the number of work-related injuries across the sector. Since 2010–11, there has been a 65 per cent reduction in the rate for traumatic injury fatalities.
Queensland Farmers’ Federation (QFF) encourages people working in our sector to heed the hard hitting message of the campaign and think about safety improvement changes that can be made in their workplace. It is up to both employers and employees to take the few extra seconds to stop and think about the risks that may well prevent another tragic death.
For more information, visit https://www.worksafe.qld.gov.au/agsafetycampaign/home or call 1300 362 128.