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December 13, 2010

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Farm-safety calendar launched

The Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI) has launched the 2011 “Be Aware Kids” Child Safety on Farms calendar.

The calendar is part of the long-running “Be Aware Kids” campaign, an awareness initiative – aimed at farmers, farm families, teachers, agricultural contractors and suppliers – that aims to eliminate fatal child incidents on farms and make them safer places where children can live and play.

Launched in Lisfearty Primary School, Dungannon last week, the calendar features 12 winning images from the 2010 “Be Aware Kids” Child Safety on Farms primary-school poster competition, which attracted 1140 entries from children at more than 40 schools.  
 
At the launch, chair of the HSENI Professor Peter McKie presented framed copies of the winning entries to Pearse Toner, of St Mary’s Primary School, Cookstown, and Caron Jones, of Lisfearty Primary School, respectively.
 
Said Prof McKie: “Farms are not only places of work but they are home to many families and children across Northern Ireland. While farms are extremely enjoyable places for children to grow up on, they can also be very dangerous.
 
In the decade preceding the launch of the “Be Aware Kids” campaign, 16 children died in farm-related incidents. Between 2005 and 2008 – thankfully – there were no child deaths; however, tragically, in 2009, there was one fatal incident involving a child on a farm. This is a reminder to us all that there can be no room for complacency and that the safety of our children must be a top priority.”
 
Prof McKie also confirmed that the calendar is being sent to every farm with children of primary-school age across Northern Ireland to promote key safety messages and to help ensure that these are communicated in a fun and engaging way.
 
The 12 winning entries in the poster competition can be viewed on the HSENI’s website, www.hseni.gov.uk

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