Farmers Weekly Safety Tip Competition - February Winner

Worcestershire sheep farmer and National Rail project manager Charles Hurst has won the Farmers Weekly farm safety tip of the month competition, run in association with Farmers Weekly.

Mr Hurst says: “The health and safety practices in the rail industry are completely out of kilter with those in farming. The rail industry has managed to clear up its act, but farmers still don’t give safety enough thought.”

Mr Hurst says using a mobile phone to check in when working in remote locations is beneficial both to those back at base and the one on the job.

“Many farming jobs are hazardous and are usually undertaken alone, with little or no risk assessment. In these situations, having a mobile phone handy in the event of an accident could save your life,” he says.

“I was once caught by an overprotective ram while checking our ewes. He came at me several times before giving me a hefty butt, knocking me over and then hitting me again.

“I eventually managed to grab him by the head and roll him over, giving me a chance to catch my breath and call the house to get my daughter to come out on the quad to help me. If my ram had been a bull – well, say no more,” says Mr Hurst.

“I think making a call to alert family members or co-workers before undertaking any task in isolation should be a first step in task planning on farms.”

Mr Hurst runs a pedigree flock of Zwartbles and Hampshire Downs in Worcestershire.

His prize for submitting the tip is a BBZ5020's.

If you have a safety tip you would like to share, that might help raise awareness of the dangers of working in agriculture, then send it to

Every month the person who sends in the best tip for our online health and safety page will win a pair of Buckler Boots.