Farmsafe gets a funding boost

Government grants $1.9 million for farm safety

Machinery
STAY SAFE: Agriculture is considered one of Australia's most dangerous industries due to hazards such as machinery operation, exposure to chemicals and working with animals. Photo: Farmsafe Queensland

STAY SAFE: Agriculture is considered one of Australia's most dangerous industries due to hazards such as machinery operation, exposure to chemicals and working with animals. Photo: Farmsafe Queensland

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The government has granted $1.9 million to Farmsafe Australia

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Federal Agriculture Minister Senator Bridget McKenzie has announced $1.9 million in funding for Farmsafe Australia, a not-for-profit organisation focused on improving farm safety.

Minister McKenzie said the Liberal and Nationals government was serious about promoting and supporting on-farm safety awareness in the agriculture.

"Farmsafe Australia is a highly-respected, established network with enormous national reach through their community farm safety activities and easy-to-access website," she said.

"This funding will support Farmsafe Australia to provide farm businesses and families with practical and impactful tools and support to make farms safer - be it local activities, conferences, online or delivered to the palm of their hands via a mobile application."

Farmsafe Australia Chair Charles Armstrong said agriculture was one of Australia's most dangerous industries with a combination of hazards, including machinery operation, exposure to chemicals and working with animals.

"These hazards are exacerbated when combined with the features of rural living and working including isolation, limited access to telecommunications and a range of different experience and skills levels of those on farm," he said.

"It is absolutely vital that farmers and families have the resources and information they need to make sound safety decisions on farm."

Mr Armstrong said the grant of $1.9 million was provided through the Federal Government's National Farm Safety Education Fund.

"The investment will enable Farmsafe Australia to expand and modernise its range of practical and high impact tools to improve safety," he said.

"In particular, we are looking forward to improving our web-based products, including the development of an app that makes it possible to access farm safety information and resources quickly and easily from smart phones and tablets.

"Importantly, the Government's support will enable Farmsafe Australia to create a dedicated role to further its work."

National Farmers' Federation CEO Tony Mahar welcomed the funding and said too many lives continued to be lost and life-changing injuries sustained, through preventable farm incidents.

"To ensure everyone working and living on farms returns home safely each night, it is vital we make farm safety a priority," he said.

Mr Mahar said the majority of on-farm fatalities were related to the operation of farm machinery and vehicles including tractors and quad bikes.

Minister McKenzie said farm safety would always be an Australian Government priority.

"The Liberal and Nationals government has already acted by announcing a mandatory standard to improve the safety of quad bikes," she said.

"We look forward to seeing the work of Farmsafe Australia."

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