New safety campaign by Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) wins backing of Black Isle brothers, who help to spread the message about dangers of overhead power lines
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FARMING brothers on the Black Isle have thrown their weight behind a campaign warning of the dangers of overhead power lines.
Farm Safety Week launched this week and, with preparations for the summer harvest now well under way, Ewan and Ross MacIver from Knockmuir Farms are making sure that other farmers around the Black Isle and beyond are keeping safe at work.
They have been distributing specially designed cab stickers from Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN) warning of the dangers of failing to look up when moving machinery near power lines.
The stickers, which are designed for use in the cab of machinery such as a tractor, combine or cherry-picker, remind the driver to always "look out, look up" and make sure they keep well away from overhead electricity lines.
If their equipment did come into contact with part of the electricity network, the consequences could be extremely serious, and in some cases fatal, and so the sticker also has clear and simple advice on what to do should the farmer happen to strike a line.
Ewan explains how his idea to share the farm safety stickers came about: “My dad is also a farmer, and when I saw him with a bundle of the stickers, they looked really eye-catching and so I thought it would be a good idea to take a handful to give out to some of the other young farmers in the local area.
"Everyone I showed them to thought they were a good idea, and between the two of us, my brother Ross and I have given out around 50 in the last couple of weeks.”
The brothers are keen to get the safety message out as much as possible, and are using their connections with the Scottish Association of Young Farmers to distribute batches of the stickers to members across the north of Scotland.
“We’re delighted to help Ewan and Ross with the distribution of SSEN’s stickers,” said Penny Montgomerie, chief executive of the Scottish Association of Young Farmers. "With modern cabs having so many screens and technology to help the farmer get the best out of their machinery, these stickers are a really effective way of ensuring that the 'look out, look up' message is still at the forefront of their thoughts as they go about their work.”
Ian Crawley, SSEN’s Operational Safety Manager, said: “I’d like to thank Ewan, Ross and their father Norman for their invaluable support in helping ensure our farm safety stickers reach as wide an audience as possible, supporting our commitment to making sure everyone stays safe while working in the fields and farmyards.
“Farm machinery has been steadily increasing in height over the years, and so it’s really important that everyone working outdoors keeps an eye out to make sure their equipment stays away from nearby power lines.
"With our ‘Look out, look up’ campaign, the focus is on working safely around the overhead electrical network, and these stickers are a great way of ensuring that message is on hand as a reminder every time someone enters their cab.”
For more information on working safely near overhead power lines, visit SSEN’s website.
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