THE Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI) is reminding farmers of the simple safety measures needed to stay safe when working with slurry.
The warning comes at the start of the slurry season, which begins at midnight on January 31.
The mixing of slurry comes with many risks as it produces a dangerous mixture of gases, including methane, carbon monoxide, ammonia, and the extremely poisonous gas hydrogen sulphide.
Camilla Mackey, Principal Inspector of HSENI’s Agriculture and Food team, said: “It is that time of year again when our farmers start to prepare to empty their slurry tanks, some of which have filled up completely over the winter months.
“Farmers will be considering a whole host of issues before they even start mixing and emptying slurry tanks, such as whether they can do this particular job themselves or do they need to hire in a contractor, where they can move their livestock to in order to mix the tank safely, what the weather and ground conditions are like, and whether they have the right equipment to do the job.
“These are the issues the farmer needs to consider when slurry season opens. Most critical, though, is that farmers MUST follow the slurry mixing code. Slurry gas kills, it is as simple as that. Farmers are fully aware of this but continue to take chances. If you follow the slurry mixing code there should be no issue.
“Stop and think SAFE before you mix slurry.”
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