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Agriculture students sow the seeds of safety

Agriculture students at Plumpton College have learned not to risk their lives through accidental contact with the electricity network.

From News & press - 13 March 2020 12:00 AM

Britain’s biggest electricity distributor, UK Power Networks, led a safety workshop for 30 industry newcomers at the college yesterday.


Agriculture remains one of Britain’s highest risk sectors for workplace injuries, so UK Power Networks is helping ingrain safe working habits among the next generation of farmers.


The students were encouraged to use the location app what3words on their mobile phones to quickly report damaged power lines to UK Power Networks. The app comes into its own in rural areas by providing three unique words for every three square metres of land. It can help UK Power Networks to identify precise locations where damage has occurred so the company can switch off the power, making the network safe for those at the scene.


Safety adviser, Ros Forbes, said: “There are near misses with the electricity network on farms and every near miss is a potential fatality. Our message to people is to know where the network is on their land, include that information on the farm map and keep tall machinery away from power cables.


“We made the students aware of the fact that agricultural machinery and vehicles, when extended, can exceed the height of the electricity wires and that certain jobs, such as stacking and storing crops should not be done within ten metres of power cables.


“When people are familiar with their environment they stop noticing the electricity network around them. Or they may work across different farms and not know where the electrical equipment is. It is always important to be aware of the electricity network and work safely around it.


“We showed the students a video which depicts what can go wrong. We are getting these vital safety messages across to young people so when they start work they will maintain good safety habits that will keep them safe.”


In the event of damage to the electricity network, keep away and call UK Power Networks’ 24hr emergency helpline on 105 or 0800 3163 105.


For further details about Plumpton College visit the website: