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It’s the event many turf farmers fear most. A serious accident resulting in injury or even death on their farm.

But aside from the immediate trauma, what follows in terms of legal responsibility and obligation of you and the company can often be equally traumatic and distressing personally at many levels.

Everyone needs to take notice of the necessity to undertake certain steps on farm safety. Remember it is law.

So what should Turf growers do to protect themselves, and their business, when it comes to farm safety incidents?

Generally protection comes down to four easy key steps:

  1. Identifying hazards – find out what can cause harm
  2. Assess the risk – understand the nature of the harm that could be caused by the hazard, how serious the harm could be and the likelihood of it happening
  3. Controlling risks – eliminating or implementing the most effective control measure possible
  4. Reviewing control measures – ensure control measures are working as planned

Turf farmers also need to document the steps you have taken to reduce the risk of a farm accident. If you have not done this you should action it immediately as it is a safeguard for you and your business if something was to go wrong.

Importantly this doesn’t have to involve complex or elaborate systems and simple record keeping could provide effective protection.

If we do have an incident on a property, one of the first things the authorities will look at is whether you have records of the steps you have taken to improve safety as a manager and the systems in place on your farm.

No one wants to be burdened with extra work, but some kind of record is essential to protect yourself and your business. It can be as simple as the top pocket diary (always keep your old diaries), where for example, you can record what you have done to make sure all farm equipment and machinery is working correctly with guarding in place and when safety inductions have been conducted. You need to protect yourself and your business so it must be done.

Here’s three very good free resources available to Turf growers.

1. Farmsafe Induction Tool

This free tool seeks to improve the safety induction of new workers. If you are a farm owner/manager select the menu button on top left hand corner of page to develop your own farm induction. Click ‘Employer Mode’ and select relevant drop down boxes. View here.

2. Work health and Safety Action Plan

AgHealth Australia provides lots of free templates and guides on this page. If nothing else, check out and complete the Work Health and Safety Action Plan

3. Emergency Plan template

Regardless of efforts to lessen risk, accidents can still happen. Having an emergency plan could minimise the effects of a dangerous incident and help prove you had solid procedures in place to deal with an emergency. Find the plan here. 


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