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Coronavirus: Keeping children safe on the farm

Posted on 30th March, 2020

With the closure of many schools due to the coronavirus situation, the Health and Safety Executive has requested that the farming community be extra vigilant on keeping children safe who may be at home on farms.

Chilren are likely to be at home for some time with the closure of schools across the country in response to the outbreak of coronavirus.

The HSE is calling on the farming industry to keep children safe during the COVID-19 restrictions.

  • Follow social distancing guidance and wash your hands regularly.
  • Most children who are killed or seriously injured in farm incidents are family members. Keep children out of work areas. Make sure play areas are away from the work area and secure.

What you need to know:

Children should not be allowed in the farm work place and for young children they should enjoy outdoor space in a secure fenced area).

Any access to the work area by children under 16, for example for education, knowledge or experience, should be planned and fully supervised by an adult not engaged in any work activity.

Children under the age of 13 years are specifically prohibited from driving or riding on any agricultural machine.

Farms are full of many hazards – vehicles and other machines, large animals; deep lagoons; chemicals and hazardous dusts – they are not a place for children, unless the risk of injury or ill health is very carefully managed and controlled.

The HSE has a range of resources and guides published to help those working on the farm, including the keeping children safe guidance.

The HSE is asking all farmers, contractors and supply chain organisations to get involved and ensure children are protected particularly during this difficult period. 

Follow the latest NHS and government advice on GOV.UK Coronavirus (COVID-19): what you need to do.

Finally, take care, look after yourself and your family, and stay safe.

If you require advice regarding your agricultural operations please contact one of our team.

Keeping children safe on the farm
Farms can present a danger to children

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