Canterbury tops list of farm accident deaths

Photo: Getty Images
Photo: Getty Images
An alarming number of Canterbury people have died in farming accidents over the past year, new WorkSafe data shows.

Canterbury had more agriculture sector deaths than any other region in New Zealand from December 2018 to November 2019 - six of the 19 recorded nationally by WorkSafe.

Waikato was second with four, while Otago and Hawke’s Bay each had three.

Eleven of the deaths were caused by vehicle incidents.

From the beginning of November last year until February 4, the WorkSafe figures show there were two more deaths on farms in Canterbury and three in Otago.

One of the Canterbury cases was a 79-year-old trampled by cattle and the other was a farm vehicle rollover that killed a 19-year-old.

In Otago, a 64-year-old was knocked off an ATV side-by-side buggy by a sheep, and a 34-year-old died in a fertiliser truck accident

Another death was on the outskirts of Waimate on January 26, when Tracey Kaynes (60) died after his tractor rolled.

However, WorkSafe did not investigate because the fatality was not work-related.

Mr Kaynes was a courier driver who lived on a lifestyle block.

Waimate Mayor Craig Rowley, who knew Mr Kaynes well, said it was ‘‘a shocking accident and unfortunately they are all a bit too common, these farm accidents we see about the place’’.

Federated Farmers South Canterbury president Jason Grant said he did not want to comment on any cases out of respect for those involved.

However, he said health and well-being was being addressed in all businesses and was ‘‘actually being talked about on-farm’’.

He had noticed a significant change in that in the past five to six years, saying farmers were looking at the subject as part of their everyday operations and had ‘‘moved forward’’from previous attitudes.






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