08:08 pm, Sunday 5 June, 2011
Workplace Health and Safety Queensland (WHSQ) has issued an alert regarding tractor use.
Injuries and deaths associated with tractors continue in rural Queensland and across Australia.
In the rural Queensland for the three years from 1 July 2006 to 1 July 2009 there were seven fatalities involving tractors. There were a further two deaths involving tractors in Queensland during the same period.
Tractors are the single greatest contributor to workplace deaths in regional Victoria accounting for five lives in 2009.
Tractors are integral to the rural industry. They are versatile and can have numerous functions.
Tractors are heavy and powerful machines that can lead to a serious injury or death through only a minor mistake.
Tractors have been involved in more accidents which have resulted in death or injury than any other piece of rural machinery.
Incidents can be associated with:
- power take-offs
- falls from tractors
- hitching equipment
- tractor operation
Employers should consider each type of tractor hazard and associated risk.
Control measures should be implemented and regularly reviewed to ensure the health and safety of all tractor operators. Adequate training should also be provided to all tractor operators.
The WHSQ tractor code of practice governing use of tractors on and off the farm spells out in clear terms what safety measures can be taken to prevent injury and death.