Fianna Fáil Agriculture Spokesperson Charlie McConalogue says a new report, which reveals that farming is the occupation with the highest risk for fatalities will come as no surprise to farmers across the country.

The findings published this week in “Risk Taking and Accidents on Irish Farms”, puts the fatality rate for farming at nearly ten times the average across occupations over the 2009-2015 period.

Deputy McConalogue said, “The figures in this report make for worrying reading and it is clear that a lot more action is needed to increase health and safety awareness on farms.

“The large number of farm fatalities witnessed over that 6 year period is simply not acceptable – every year the farming and agriculture industry represent the sector with the highest number of work related deaths. One hundred and thirty eight people have died in farm accidents over the past seven years, with 11 fatalities in the ag sector in 2017 alone.

“Farmers need to be particularly vigilant in the summer months as the working day is longer, and with the summer holidays there can be more children in and around the farm.

“It is vital that the Government sufficiently fund information and health and safety campaigns, specifically tackling the most vulnerable groups.

“Fianna Fáil has consistently argued for the rollout of better education and awareness for farm safety.  The high number of farm fatalities must be reduced and the relevant departments must step up to the mark”.