Farm Ireland
Independent.ie

Thursday 23 March 2017

Farmers must read the insurance 'fine print'

Ken Whelan

Peter Gohery, speaking at the All Island Farm Safety conference in The Hillgrove Hotel, Monaghan. Photo: Rory Geary.
Peter Gohery, speaking at the All Island Farm Safety conference in The Hillgrove Hotel, Monaghan. Photo: Rory Geary.

The need for proper farm and personal insurance and a full understanding of the exact incidents covered by a policy are vital for every farmer, according to a farm accident victim.

Galway farmer and construction company owner Peter Gohery lost his left lower leg when a "tail" of garment he was wearing on the day of the accident got caught in the PTO shaft of his diet feeder and severed his lower limb in a matter of seconds.

"The first prosthetic leg cost €10,000 which was covered by the insurance but that soon wore out and I am now on my second €10,000 prosthetic leg and I don't know how much longer that leg will last," he said.

The infectiously optimistic Mr Gohery reckoned he might be out of pocket to the tune of €40,000 long-term at the rate he was wearing out prosthetic legs. His policy did not cover that eventuality, and that was why farmers should always study the details of insurance.

Mr Gohery said it was ironic that he was assiduous when it came to health and safety matters with his construction company which employed 12 people, but when it came to his own farm, he should fall victim to a machinery accident.

He said farm accidents could occur to anyone at anytime and he related a case involving a friend who he described as a "bull of a man". He had walked across dirty water in a pair of wellingtons with a hole in them and his foot became infected.

"He spent three weeks on a drip in intensive care while the doctors investigated whether he had Weil's disease."

Mr Gohery urged farmers to take safety and insurance cover seriously.


"You don't want to end up in a situation where you are lying on your back after an accident with your wife looking over you and pleading with you not to die," he added.

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