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Injury victim lawyers call for focus on agricultural worker safety

15 July 2019

Lawyers representing victims of workplace accidents and their families in Scotland have called for a focus on safety in the agricultural industry, highlighting figures which show tragic increases in fatal accidents in that sector.

Watermans Solicitors made the call at the start of Farm Safety Week 2019 (15-19 July).

Statistics published by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) earlier this month showed a 70 per cent rise in workplace fatalities in Scotland in 2018/19 compared to 2017/18, with a significant part of the increase due to increased fatalities in the agricultural, forestry and fishing sectors.

Previously published research from HSE indicated that the average number of fatalities in these sectors over a five-year period has been higher in Scotland than in other parts of Great Britain.

Scott Whyte, Managing Director of Watermans Solicitors, is calling for everyone involved in the sector to commit to improving the situation.

He said: “Every workplace fatality, wherever and however it occurs, is one too many and represents a tragedy for its victim and their family. There is legislation and safety protections in place to protect people in every industry but too often we see at first-hand the consequences of it not being properly followed or enforced in the agricultural sector.

“Farm Safety Week is an important part of the work that many organisations are doing to improve safety. I hope we see a renewed commitment from all involved in the sector to improve safety for everyone who works in it and achieve a situation where no-one goes to work and doesn’t come home again.”

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