fbpx
Print this page
Thursday, 10 June 2021 06:55

Protext people from others' mistakes

Written by  Staff Reporters
Sam Hodsell 50/50 sharemilks with his partner Jenna for his parents Craig and Gaewyn on the 250 hectare family farm at Taramoa in Southland. Sam Hodsell 50/50 sharemilks with his partner Jenna for his parents Craig and Gaewyn on the 250 hectare family farm at Taramoa in Southland.

Sam Hodsell, the 2021 Otago-Southland FMG Young Farmer of the Year, says it’s critical to identify and manage workplace risks on their farm – but he and his family are also actively putting tangible measures in place to help protect people if someone does make a mistake.

“For instance, we’ve recently purchased and had big red buoys screwed onto all our irrigation pipes,” says Sam, who 50/50 sharemilks with his partner Jenna for his parents Craig and Gaewyn on the 250 hectare family farm at Taramoa in Southland.

“That was learning from a near miss and we wanted to make sure the pipes were highly visible and they certainly are now. We have also benefited from productivity gains due to saving time looking for lost pipes.”

Sam sourced the buoys from New Zealand CeeMee company, which sells innovative farming safety solutions. The Hodsells are now also looking at installing rollover crush protection on quad bikes.

“My parents have always been very aware about health and safety,” says Sam.

“Growing up, I learned a lot from seeing the measures my dad put in place on farm.

“We have a health and safety plan, training register and incident report. We used online templates provided by farming industry organisations to draw those up and it was pretty straightforward. We sat down as a team and identified our risks and talked about how we could manage, minimise or eliminate them.

“Identifying and managing risk is also ongoing. For instance, one of our critical risks is working with large animals. We provide training for our people, to make sure they have the skills to safely do all aspects of their work. With livestock that includes training people to work in safe ways around animals and also how to read an animal’s behaviour. However, we recognise that it takes a long time to pick that up.”

Fatigue has also been identified as a critical risk on farm and over the past two years, Sam and Jenna have increased their staff numbers to help address that – with resulting benefits.

“Fatigue is one of the biggest risks from my point of view,” says Sam.

“Employing extra staff means more of the workload is shared. We talk with people about how they are feeling, and if they are tired, I will say go home and get some rest. I know if I’m feeling tired or under the weather, I don’t do the best job and there’s a risk of taking shortcuts. I don’t want anyone working if they are feeling like that.”

More like this

Birds causing carnage in rural NZ

Nesting birds are wreaking havoc when it comes to rural insurance, causing more than $4 million in claims over the last three years, says FMG.

'Join the fun'

A first-time competitor, 2021 FMG Young Farmer of the Year Jake Jarman initially signed up to the contest in order to take part in the fun.

Another increase!

OPINION: A mate of the Hound's was unimpressed when he recently received his voting papers for the annual meeting of rural insurer FMG.

National

Why should we do more?

OPINION: Managing our dairy sector's impacts inevitably attracts a range of views. Should we do more, less or stay the…

Cattle sale with a difference

Innovation, loss and resilience have brought the Singh family to the point where it is poised to honour its patriarch,…

O'Connor's overseas odyssey

Agriculture Minister Damien O'Connor continued his overseas odyssey in the past week with multiple meetings in the US, Europe and…

Machinery & Products

Protective tint

Now available in New Zealand, Wildcat Static Cling Tint adds a protective layer to the windows of your tractor, harvester…

New owner for stoll

German company Stoll, the well-known manufacturer of tractor front loaders and attachments that claims to be the second largest producer…

Fert spreaders get a revamp

Kuhn has updated its MDS range of fertiliser spreaders, giving farmers more options to upgrade machines as situations change, rather…

Mowers spring into action

With spring upon us, thoughts turn towards shutting up paddocks for conservation and maybe the purchase of new machinery to…