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Independent.ie

Thursday 23 November 2017

We'll consider any measure that will help reduce farm deaths - Varadkar

Jerry King from Louth participating at the 2017 National Ploughing Championships in Screggan, Tullamore. Pic: Mark Condren
Jerry King from Louth participating at the 2017 National Ploughing Championships in Screggan, Tullamore. Pic: Mark Condren
Kevin Doyle

Kevin Doyle

The number of fatalities on Irish farms this year has been described as “enormous” by Taoiseach Leo Varadkar.

He said the Government “is very concerned” by the 16, the latest of which was champion ploughman Martin Kehoe Jnr in Co Wexford on Tuesday.

His death has cast a shadow over the National Ploughing Championships where his family are well-known.

“We used to see a lot of deaths in construction particularly and changes were made to make that industry much safer. 

“Certainly we’re happy to consider any measure really that will reduce the number of injuries and fatalities on farms,” Mr Varadkar said.

The Taoiseach said he doesn’t believe legislation alone will provide a solution.

“A lot of it is going to be about information and education in particular,” he said.

“We need to look at what has worked in other industries. Factories and construction used to be very dangerous place and now they are very safe place.

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“We need to look at what has worked in those sectors and apply that to farming.”


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