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Warwickshire Rural Hub

Health and Safety

Contribute to Warwickshire Fire and Rescue’s Management Plan

Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Authority has a statutory duty to prepare an Integrated Risk Management Plan. As part of that process they regularly review and assess the full range of foreseeable risks impacting the communities of Warwickshire to ensure that they have the plans, people, processes and equipment in place to ensure that Warwickshire remains a safe place to live and work.   All Warwickshire residents are invited to take part in the consultation survey and to give their views on the proposals.  To complete the online survey, please click on the link below:

Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Integrated Risk Management Plan 2020-2025 Consultation Survey 

 

Search before you dig with the free to use online search service

Did you know that it’s National Safe Digging Week ending on 26 September 2020?  Over one third of farmers have hit an underground pipe or cable whilst digging, or know a colleague that has – and tragically, 33 percent of these incidents resulted in fatalities.  To dig safely consider using www.linesearchbeforeyoudig.co.uk – a free to use online search service where any individual can check their works against owners’ utility assets. These assets include hundreds of thousands of kilometres of underground and overhead pipelines and cables in the electricity, gas, high pressure fuel/oil, heating, water and fibre optic networks.

Vigilance for lungworm advised

Cattle are infected with lungworm through eating grass which is contaminated with infective larvae passed out in the dung of other infected animals. Mild, damp conditions favour the survival of these larvae on the pasture.  The present warm conditions with rainfall favour this situation.

Lungworm is a parasitic infection of the respiratory tract in cattle, which can cause severe disease outbreaks with coughing and respiratory distress. Death can occur in heavy infestations. Other signs can include weight loss, and reduced milk yield in dairy cows.  Animals that are exposed to lungworms usually develop immunity to re-infection. However, a lack of exposure in young cattle can result in clinical disease in older cattle. In order to maintain immunity, further exposure to lungworm is important.  Disease in older animals is being increasingly diagnosed in AFBI both in those that have not previously been exposed, or in those whose immunity has diminished due to not having been re-exposed and so vigilance is advised.

Mind Your Head on World Suicide Prevention Day (10 Sept)

Please know that at times when you feel alone, your loved ones care about you and there is always someone you can talk to.  Farming Community Network operates their helpline between 7.00am – 11.00pm every day of the year.

03000 111999

FCN has a network of over 400 volunteers across England and Wales, many of whom are involved in farming, or have close links with agriculture, and therefore have a great understanding of the issues that farmers, farm workers and farming families regularly face.   Their volunteers provide free, confidential, pastoral and practical support to anyone who seeks help, regardless of whether the issue is personal or business-related.  Approximately 40 volunteers help with the running of the FCN helpline. Cases that come through the FCN helpline are usually referred to a local FCN volunteer, who will try and organise a face-to-face meeting with the person seeking help. It is entirely up to them how much support they need or want from FCN.

Testers required for a new lone worker safety app

Farmers in the IKnowFood field lab have helped design a lone worker safety app which will soon be available to download on google play store.  The app is designed to notify others if the user remains motionless for too long and fails to respond to notifications. Existing solutions are designed for outdoor use and as such, rely on GPS technology. But inside barns and sheds, there is little GPS signal meaning that these solutions are often ineffective. The aim of this new app is to create a solution which works off WIFI instead.   IKnowFood is looking for farmers to test the app before its release.  For further information on the app and how to get involved in its testing please visit this page.  

Reminder on the storage of ammonium nitrate

Recent events in Beirut have focussed attention on ammonium nitrate and the need to store it properly.  Government advice on storage is available here. The ‘5-point plan’ should always be followed:

  1. Wherever possible use a Fertiliser Industry Assurance Scheme (FIAS) approved supplier.
  2. Wherever possible keep in a secure area such as a building or sheeted away from public view.
  3. Carry out regular stock checks and report any loss to the Police immediately (call 101).
  4. Avoid leaving fertiliser in a field overnight – never leave fertiliser in the field for a long period of time.
  5. Remember it is illegal to sell ammonium nitrate without the correct documentation

Businesses asked to report Covid-19 cases to Warwickshire Public Health

Warwickshire County Council is asking all businesses in Warwickshire to immediately contact Warwickshire Public Health 24/7 if they have two or more suspected or positive cases of Covid-19. You should also notify the Public Health England West Midlands health protection team by ringing 0344 225 3560.

Warwickshire Public Health can be contacted on dphadmin@warwickshire.gov.uk 

Some types of business may experience more rapid infection rates. If your business falls into one or more of the categories listed below, please contact Warwickshire Public Health immediately in the event of ONE positive test:

  • Food processing factories/plants;
  • Agricultural settings where seasonal staff live on site;
  • Warehouses and manufacturing sites which may be noisy (meaning staff need to shout to be heard) and where ventilation may be poor and/or social distancing may be difficult;
  • Workplaces with multiple shared facilities or high turnover of staff/visitors;
  • Workplaces with high turnover of agency staff;
  • Other workplaces where social distancing may be difficult.

By notifying then immediately of outbreaks or single cases in high risk settings you will be helping to provide the quickest possible Warwickshire response.

A reminder of considerations when preparing for harvest

National Farmers’ Union has prepared some reminder information of the rules, regulations and safety checks that need to be considered when preparing your harvest machinery.   Visit this page for information on preparing your tractors and trailers.  Visit this page for the rules on towing header trailers.

Thrive at Work Workplace Wellbeing Programme

One in six workers experience mental health difficulties which has resulted in millions of lost work hours from sickness and presenteeism. Mental illness is the single biggest cause of sickness absence followed by musculoskeletal.  Thrive at Work Workplace Wellbeing Awards programme (Thrive at Work) is a free holistic workplace wellbeing accredited programme that has been created by the West Midlands Combined Authority. It is designed to guide managers to make effective decisions on employee mental health and wellbeing.  Thrive at Work enables every organisation to be in a position where they can implement early interventions confidently and reap the rewards of reduced sickness absence, lower staff turnover and an increase of productivity and job satisfaction.    Thrive at work is open to any organisation that employs more than eight people.  For more information please see this brief leafletdetailed brochurewebsite or contact thriveatwork@wmca.org.uk or 0121 214 7861.

Coventry Corsairs Rugby Club

Coventry Corsairs is Coventry’s first fully inclusive Rugby Club. They train at Coventrians in Holbrooks on Tuesdays and Thursday evenings 7pm – 8.30pm.   All ages and abilities and anyone with a love of rugby are welcome.  For contact details please visit this page.

 

It’s OK not to be OK

Please remember its OK not be OK.  Take a look at the Yellow Wellies Mind Your Head page to see where you can access support when the going gets tough.   The Farming Community Network support line is open every day of the year, 7.00am – 11.00pm.

Tel: 03000 111999 or email help@fcn.org.uk

 

 

What3words: the app that could save your life

What3words is a free app that points to a very specific location in the world.  It has divided the world into 57 trillion squares, each measuring 3m by 3m (10ft by 10ft) and each having a unique, randomly assigned three-word address.  When you download the app it will find your location and give you the 3 words that are assigned to your location – which can be given to emergency services to enable them to locate you straight away.  The app does not need a phone connection to give you your three words.  

Download the Farmers’ Guardian guide to safeguarding your farm

For Farm Safety Week (14 – 22 July) Farmers’ Guardian has published an Intelligence Guide for Health and Safety, making sure that in a time of increasing numbers of farm fatalities you can take steps to better safeguard your farm and your future. Download your copy here.

The little book of minding your head

There are a number of mental health risk factors associated with agriculture. Farmers work long hours, often in isolation. They can be under significant financial pressure, often required to take on significant debt to purchase the land and equipment required to operate. And in most cases, a farmer’s place of business is also his or her home, meaning there is no easy way to get away from the workload.   Increased understanding, and discussions around mental health will, in time, reduce the discrimination experienced  by those who have mental health issues. The Farm Safety Foundation’s Little Book of Minding Your Head offers a pocket guide to understanding mental health and stress management.  Download your copy here.

Good Farm Guide published by Health and Safety Executive

A guide entitled “What a good farm looks like” has been published by Health and Safety Executive.   The guide will help farmers understand the common risks to health and safety on farms and what can be done to control them.  HSE Inspectors will also look at the topics covered in this guide when they visit farms to check that risks are being controlled in these areas.  The guide can be accessed here.

Livestock safety focus from the Farm Safety Partnership

The NFU and partners in the Farm Safety Partnership are highlighting steps that farmers can take to better manage risk to themselves, their workers and to the public.

The key messages to industry they are promoting are:

1. Select and use well designed handling facilities, in the yard, buildings and field. Keep them maintained.

2. Never enter an enclosure with a loose bull or when an unrestrained cow is with a calf unless the animals are restrained or segregated.

3. Remove aggressive animals from the herd.

4. Wherever possible separate livestock from the public and select fields without rights of way when cattle have calves at foot.

Further information can be viewed here.

Farm Safety Partnership aims to reduce fatal accidents by 50%

The NFU and partners in the Farm Safety Partnership (FSP) have committed to work towards reducing farm work place fatal accidents by 50% by 2023.  To help achieve this ambition, the NFU and FSP partners are launching a year-long safety campaign focusing attention on four of the top causes of farm work place fatality and injury.  The aim of the campaign is to highlight changes that can be made by farmers to farm work place behaviours which, if implemented, have the potential to significantly improve the safety record of agriculture and save lives often at minimal cost.

The first quarter‘s campaign focuses on transport.  A new NFU Vehicle Health Check Guide has been released to help farmers maintain and use vehicles safely and comply with the law.  The guide can be downloaded here.

Tips for reducing fire risk

Every year in the UK, 1,700 farm buildings and 66,000 acres of grassland are destroyed by fire.
Tips to consider for reducing fire risk:
• Hay and straw should be removed from fields as soon as possible after harvesting
• Hay and straw should be stored separately from other buildings, particularly those housing fuels, agrochemicals and machinery in stacks of reasonable size, spaced at least 10 metres apart separately from livestock housing
• Petrol, diesel and other fuels should be stored in secure areas and storage tank outlets should be padlocked.
• Fertilisers and pesticides should be kept under lock and key. The Health & Safety Executive can provide further advice on the storage and transportation of fertilisers, particularly ammonium nitrate.
• Rubbish should be disposed of safely and on a regular basis
Warwickshire Fire and Rescue state that it is very important to ensure that the property name whether a farm, house or business is clearly shown at the entrance so emergency services can locate your property as quickly as possible.

Beware of waste materials in animal bedding

During routine inspections the Environment Agency has discovered instances where waste materials, such as plasterboard and wood contaminated with plastics, metals and other hazardous material have been used as animal bedding on farms. This may be harmful to livestock, the environment, is illegal and can be very expensive to clean up.  Farmers should be present during the delivery of waste materials to their farm. Ensure that simple checks are made on whether the waste is to the same specification as you agreed and that it is free from contaminants. Wrongly described waste, contaminated waste or waste that is not allowed under a U8 exemption should be rejected. For more information please contact the Environment Agency.

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A donation to the Rural Hub of any amount is always gratefully received. However, only donations of over £100 can be acknowledged on our Hub Supporter's page.  A donation can be paid by cheque, BACS, standing order or by the Paypal link below.  If you would like our bank details please contact the Co-ordinator on info@ruralhub.org.uk 

 

 

 

Contact Us

The Warwickshire Rural Hub CIC
c/o Pleasance Farm, Kenilworth
Warwickshire, CV8 1PR

Email: info@ruralhub.org.uk
Tel: 07780 159291

Company Registration No: 7026157
Registered office: 23 West Bar Street, Banbury, OX16 9SA

 

Hub Chair

Henry Lucas
E: henrylucas76@gmail.com

 

Hub

Co-ordinator

Jane Hampson
E: info@ruralhub.org.uk

Tel: 07780 159291

Warwickshire Rural Hub CIC Directors

Henry Lucas (Chair)
Graham Collier (Deputy Chair)
Karen Ellis
Carrie Robbins
Alexandra Robinson

Hub Steering Group Members

George Bostock, NFU
Mark Dickin, Ellacotts Accountants
Tom Newbery, Highfield Farm
Alexandra Robinson, Wright Hassall LLP
Matt Willmott, King's Seeds
Jon Slee, Abbey Farm
Andrew Cook, Farmer
Emlyn Evans, Squab Hall

Disclaimer

The Warwickshire Rural Hub accepts no liability for any direct, indirect or consequential loss arising from any action taken in reliance on the information contained on this website.

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