Make safety a priority when spreading slurry
With many slurry tanks on farms now reaching capacity, and with the spreading dates opened in many counties, (Cavan, Monaghan, Leitrim and Donegal will open after January 31) many farmers are spreading slurry to reduce levels in their tanks and create more capacity for the remaining winter period ahead.
Slurry is a highly dangerous substance and great care and precautions should be taken when handling it.
Much media coverage over the past few years has been given to the dangers of slurry gases and the tragic consequences that can occur, ultimately resulting in death, but I still see and hear of farmers and contractors taking unnecessary risks.
Gases such as hydrogen sulphide, carbon dioxide, ammonia and methane are produced during the breakdown of slurry by bacteria.
Hydrogen sulphide gas is poisonous to both man and beast. It is fatal and one breath of it can kill. It is found above ground level where there is little ventilation.
At high concentrations it cannot be smelled.
Precautions to be followed when agitating slurry