Vehicles play a vital role in farm work but incidents involving vehicles are the number one cause of deaths and serious injuries on British farms.

Incidents involving moving vehicles have been responsible for 30% of all fatalities on farms over the past five years, that’s 48 lives lost in incidents that have destroyed farming families.

In the South West alone, nine people have died after being hit by moving vehicles in the past five years.

And hundreds more people are hurt in incidents involving moving vehicles on farms every year.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE), Britain’s workplace safety regulator, is calling on everyone in the farming community to do what they can to reduce the number of injuries involving vehicles and save lives.

HSE is this week launching a farm vehicle safety campaign and has created a website which brings together lots of great advice on using vehicles safely on farms. HSE says there are three pieces in the vehicle safety jigsaw: operating a safe farm, maintaining a safe vehicle and being a safe driver. Together, these pieces will help to keep everyone on farms safer. If one piece is missing, the risks increase.

Sue Thompson, HSE’s Head of Agriculture Policy, said: “We want to make 2023 a safer year on our farms by working together to prevent injuries and deaths. Agriculture consistently has the highest number of fatal and serious injuries of all industry sectors in Great Britain. Over the past five years, the average fatal incident rate is 21 times higher in agriculture than the average across all other industries. That is a shocking statistic.

“That’s why we’re asking farmers to consider three areas of their daily farming activities and take the right actions to prevent another farming tragedy.”