Farmers could be facing an NCT for their tractors
A working group of the Farm Safety Partnership Advisory Committee, is currently considering the establishment of a mandatory safety test system for tractors.
If it goes ahead, farmers could be facing the equivalent of an NCT for their tractors in an attempt to reduce the number of farmers hurt and fatally injured in farm machinery incidents.
Incidents with tractors and machinery are the largest causes of deaths on Irish farms in recent years and the committee is tasked with raising awareness around farm safety.
The proposal for a mandatory safety test for tractors one of the proposed actions under the Farm Safety Action Plan (2016–2018) which it launched recently.
One member of the working group, Tom Murphy, of the Professional Agricultural Contractors, said the proposal has already been mooted in Europe.
"Too many accidents on Irish farms are because of poorly maintained machinery. All work vehicles have some form of test, why not agricultural machinery too?"
He said that a basic NCT of any tractor should ensure that the tractor has working lights and brakes, the proposals goes as far to say that agricultural machinery should have seat belts, seat sensors, PTO stop buttons, raised hydraulic sensors/ alarms and hands-free devices.
A spokesperson for the Health and Safety Authority said there is no specific date for when the work of this group will be completed.