Farm Safety Week: Farmers reminded to leave their phones down when driving

Farmers and crofters are being asked to set down their mobiles this Farm Safety Week and take more care in their cabs.

As Farm Safety Week comes to an end, NFU Scotland is asking farmers and crofters remain focussed when they are driving tractors, vehicles and machinery, and not to use their mobile phones.

Whether they are driving on a main road or on-farm track, using your phone whilst driving any vehicle is illegal and needs to be taken seriously.

An NFUS spokesman warned: “Even a momentary lapse in concentration can have disastrous results with potentially life-changing consequences, not only for the operator but those working with and around them.

These are large, powerful and potentially dangerous machines being used on farms and crofts and need to be treated as such.

As well as being dangerous, you can be hit with a substantial fine if you’re caught. Those who have passed their test in the last two years can even lose their licence if they are caught using their phone while driving.

NFU Scotland legal and technical chairman Tom French said: “If there is one thing we should take from Farm Safety Week it is that we, as farmers and crofters, need to be completely vigilant when undertaking tasks, even if they seem easy or mundane.

“Using a mobile phone completely distracts, even for a few seconds. That is enough time for something to wrong and to cause and accident.

We as an industry, need to, and can, do better when it comes to farm safety and the best way to do that is to start with the simple things, like not using our mobile phones when driving or operating machinery.

“It is important to have your phone on you in case of emergencies, but with all the alternatives now available for in cabs and vehicles there is no excuse to be using your handset while driving.”