Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food, and the Marine with special responsibility for farm safety Martin Heydon T.D. has announced that the Farm Safety Scheme under the new Targeted Agricultural Modernisation Scheme (TAMS 3) is now open for applications.

This is the first time that farm safety investments have their own standalone scheme under TAMS and have been enhanced with a higher grant rate of 60%. 

Minister Heydon said:

Government announces opening of the Farm Safety Scheme, under the Targeted Agricultural Modernisation Scheme (TAMS 3) 1
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I would urge all farmers to consider this opportunity for funding to invest in really practical investments to make their farms safer.  The increase in grant aid for farm safety related investments to an enhanced higher rate of 60% makes it much more feasible for farmers to makes changes to their farm that protects them, their family, and visitors to the farm.

This significant grant rate will make it much more attractive to upgrade the likes of animal handling facilities on farms. Incidents with animals account for the greatest number of non-fatal incidents occurring on farms and proper handling facilities such as cattle crushes, or calving pens can help prevent these incidents from occurring.

Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine Charlie McConalogue T.D. said:

Farm safety is something this Government puts significant emphasis on. I’m pleased that the TAMS 3 Farm Safety Capital Investment Scheme under which all farmers may avail of 60% grant-aid on the investments is now open.  This enhanced grant rate will support farmers to invest in newer and safer equipment and facilities for their farms.

There is a wide range of items available under the Farm Safety Scheme including fixed and mobile handling facilities for cattle, sheep, and horses, replacements for agitation points or older slats, safety cages for roofs, upgrades to electric wiring, yard lights, livestock monitors and fertility tags, wheel changing equipment, and silage bale slicer with plastic remover.

Minister Heydon added:

My priority is to work with farmers to improve health, safety and wellbeing on farms, and this new funding will support my drive to achieve a cultural change around safety on our farms.  Farms are working environments and we must continue to work together to make them safer. Reductions in the rate of fatal and serious non-fatal incidents on farms will happen only by changing behaviours driven by increasing awareness, training, and investment in farm safety.

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Objective

The objective of the Scheme is to provide an incentive to farmers to avail of investments to improve their own safety and that of their farm. 

Grant aid will only be paid on approved, completed and eligible expenditure and shall be paid at the rate of 60% up to the applicable maximum investment ceiling of €90,000 per holding. Multiple applications per tranche are permissible. However, the minimum amount of investment which is eligible for approval under this Scheme is €2,000 per application.

Why Farm Safety?

Farm safety continues to be one of the most critical issues which needs to be addressed on farms today.  In terms of workplace fatalities, it is  the most dangerous occupation in Ireland with an average of 19 fatal incidents per year on farms over the past decade. Fatalities on farms account for over 40% of all fatal workplace incidents in Ireland, while farmers only account for 6% of the workforce.

With around 4,500 non-fatal injuries annually on farms, many are life changing and place the farmers’ livelihood and farm at risk.

Livestock, particularly cows after calving, vehicles and machinery, falls from heights,  slurry and hazardous substances all pose risks, but incidents can be avoided if these risks are properly managed.

Further information and advice on safety and wellbeing for farmers is available at:

gov.ie – Farm Safety (www.gov.ie)

What Investments are Eligible?

Investment items include fixed and mobile handling facilities and equipment for all animals, replacement of agitation points and older slats, safety cages for roofs, upgrades to electric wiring, yard lights, livestock monitors and fertility tags, wheel changing equipment, hydraulic motors to replace PTO shafts, and silage bale slicer with plastic remover.

A full list of the eligible investments is detailed at Annex B of the scheme Terms and Conditions.  All Department Structural Specifications and notices relevant to this Scheme can be accessed on the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine website at: gov.ie – TAMS – Farm Building and Structures Specifications (www.gov.ie)

Grant aid will not be paid for (a) second-hand materials or equipment or (b) ex-demo or (c) work carried out by contractors who do not comply with the tax clearance requirements laid down in paragraph 10 of the scheme. Only fixed investments constructed/erected/installed on eligible land are eligible for grant aid.

Queries of a technical nature relating to the specifications should be submitted by email to the following email address: tams@agriculture.gov.ie.

Annex G of the scheme Terms and Conditions lists the contact phone numbers for technical queries.

 

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