Sharing farm safety knowledge

Photo courtesy of the MB Labour & Immigration - Workplace Safety & Health Div. (via the CASA website

Photo courtesy of the MB Labour & Immigration – Workplace Safety & Health Div. (via the CASA website

Canadian Agriculture Safety Week is March 11 to 17, 2012 – and plans are underway for its launch in BC.

I talked with Diane Wreford of the Canadian Agricultural Safety Association, who told me what planners have in mind for the BC launch. It sounds really cool – and I’m hoping to go – but I won’t tell you til it’s finalized. Past launches have taken place in nurseries, fields, and potato processing plants in different provinces – and now it’s BC’s turn for the spotlight.

“We try to emphasize that whatever you do, safety should be first,” Diane said, describing how CASA and its partners are creating their safety resources based on requests from farmers who responded to an online survey from Farm Credit Canada.

It reports 85 percent of Canadian producers understand the importance of farm safety and 34 percent want training in the basics of preparing a safety plan for their operations. Now that plan is available for download online: Canada FarmSafe Plan on the CASA website.

“They all say safety is really important, but in fact only one in 10 has a plan,” Diane said. “And we’re saying: ‘Okay, you can’t really be serious unless you’ve committed yourself publicly – unless you’ve got a real plan.”

Sharing resources

Diane said CASA shares lots of agriculture safety resources from BC and Ontario.

“They’re the two provinces that have very well-supported farm safety groups and they have the expertise and financial support to come up with great resources,” said Diane, adding that CASA also shares resources created by funding from the federal government – Agriculture and Agri-food Canada.

New agriculture safety resources will be on the CASA website soon – so check it out – and stay tuned for news on the BC launch.


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