Over-loaded trail­ers a dan­ger to all on roads

Irish Independent - Farming - - NEWS - MARTIN RYAN

FARM­ERS grossly over­load­ing trail­ers when tow­ing with cars and 4x4 ve­hi­cles is cre­at­ing “a safety haz­ard” on pub­lic roads, the gardaí warned.

Garda Bren­dan Con­don, Garda Traf­fic Corp, stressed se­ri­ous ex­cess loads have been de­tected as he demon­strated the hi-tech mo­bile ve­hi­cle weigh­ing unit used by the gardaí.

“A jeep and trailer in North Tip­per­ary last week weighed 7.6 tonnes and the farmer did not ap­pear to be aware it was grossly over-loaded,” he told those gath­ered for the Fam­ily Farm Safety Day at Gur­teen Agri­cul­tural Col­lege in Co Tip­per­ary on Sat­ur­day.

He said that the typ­i­cal farm sa­loon car tow­ing a one or two-axle cat­tle box is de­signed to carry one cow or two small an­i­mals.

“We are also notic­ing an in­crease in the num­ber of farm­ers us­ing trac­tors and trail­ers for mart trans­port be­cause they don’t have a li­cence to tow — they’re afraid of hav­ing to do the driving test,” he added.

Farm­ers were urged to check the De­sign Gross Ve­hi­cle Weight or Max­imised Au­tho­rised Mass, which is the max­i­mum load a ve­hi­cle or trailer can carry in the owner’s man­ual or statu­tory plate.

The event was or­gan­ised by IFA, Tea­gasc, Gur­teen Col­lege, Agri Aware, Em­brace, FRS, ICMSA, An Garda Síochána, and Agri Kids as a fam­ily day out with the em­pha­sis on cre­at­ing aware­ness in all as­pects of farm ac­tiv­ity.

Brighter

Ge­orge Gra­ham from Em­brace ad­vised peo­ple with men­tal health prob­lems that “ac­cept­ing you have a prob­lem” is the first step and “if you get up and go­ing there is light and the light with get brighter and brighter”.

Claire Mooney, Tea­gasc, Ne­nagh said that the pur­pose of the event was to get the whole farm fam­ily in­volved in aware­ness of dan­ger­ous sit­u­a­tions.

Mean­while, the Health and Safety Au­thor­ity (HSA) have an­nounced that a two-week long in­ten­sive farm in­spec­tion cam­paign will com­mence on Tues­day May 8 next with vis­its to ap­prox­i­mately 200 farms fo­cus­ing on safe work­ing with ve­hi­cles and ma­chin­ery.

Over the last 10 years, half of all fa­tal farm ac­ci­dents in­volved ve­hi­cles and ma­chin­ery, while there has been a sharp in­crease in quad bike fa­tal­i­ties.

Ge­orge Gra­ham from Em­brace at the Fam­ily Farm Safety Day at Gur­teen Agri­cul­tural Col­lege with Imelda Walsh, Chair­per­son of the North Tip­per­ary IFA.

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