Farm unions warn of dangers to farm safety

Farm unions across the UK have warned the public to be careful when taking part in Halloween activities such as lighting bonfires, setting off fireworks and using sky lanterns in because of the dangers they pose to farms and farm animals.

The Farmers Union of Wales (FUW) released a statement urging people to consider the potential distress that Halloween fireworks, sky lanterns and bonfires can cause to livestock and pets.

The statement, which was released on Wednesday, October 19, was intended to remind people of the dangers posed by festive celebrations.

FUW Vice President Ian Rickman said: “This time of year presents many dangers for animals and children – so don’t let neglect and ignorance be the cause of tragedy this year.

“We therefore urge people to adhere to the fireworks safety code at all times to minimize risk to livestock, pets and humans.”

The FUW has asked people to be careful of livestock as they ‘don’t like’ the sound of fireworks and it may cause them distress.

“It’s also a good idea to make sure your pets have been microchipped by a veterinarian and the chip details are up to date before the night of the bonfire, just in case they go missing,” said said Rickman.

“We also remind people that sky lanterns have been banned on all public land by all local authorities in Wales as they present significant hazards to livestock and are, of course, a considerable fire safety risk. .”

FUW also advises people to notify neighbors a few days in advance if you are planning to have a fireworks display, particularly if they are elderly, have young children, or own livestock/pets.

The National Union of Farmers

The National Farmers Union (NFU) has specifically advised against the use of sky lanterns.

NFU Vice President David Exwood said: “The sooner sky lanterns are banned, the better.

“We continue to hear from farmers about the devastating damage they cause to crop fields and buildings, and the serious, and in some cases fatal, injuries to livestock and other animals.”

While sky lanterns are pretty in the sky, they are a blight in the great British countryside.”

Exwood said that more 70,000 members from the public showed their support for the NFU’s campaign for a total ban on sky lanterns in England and Wales.

With every council in Wales having banned lanterns altogether, the NFU called on the rest of the UK Do the same thing.

“I encourage more people to sign our petition calling on the government to take immediate action and ban sky lanterns to protect property and animals,” Exwood said.

Ulster Farmers Union

Ulster Farmers’ Union (UFU) deputy chairman William Irvine said: ‘With Halloween fast approaching, we urge members of the public to be extra careful when celebrating, particularly in areas rural.

“It is extremely important that sky lanterns are not used because once they are launched into the air you have no control over where they go or land.

“It is possible that cattle will eat the metal fittings which will then puncture their internal organs and cause life-threatening injuries,” he said.

William Irvine, UFU Vice President

Speaking on the fireworks, Irvine said they should not be used near livestock grazing and people should be careful around farm dogs as the noise can cause distress.

“We encourage anyone planning a fireworks display in rural areas to be mindful of the safety and well-being of their neighbors as well as their animals,” he said.

“They need to notify nearby residents so they can take all necessary precautions to protect themselves and their animals.”

Ulster Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals

The Ulster Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (USPCA), Northern Ireland’s animal welfare charity, has shared pre-Halloween advice to help pet owners ensure their pets are healthy and safe on vacation.

The charity pointed out that while Halloween can be a fun event, the festivities involved can be very distressing for pets. He said fireworks, in particular, can have a very distressing effect on many animals.

Warning signs of animals in distress include: panting, barking, whining, pacing and shivering.

Deirdre McArdle, Animal Care Manager, said: “As a pet owner, there are a few things to keep in mind during Halloween so that it’s an enjoyable time for everyone.

“Pets can be frightened by fireworks, so we recommend keeping them indoors. This will help reduce their anxiety and reduce the chance of them running away in fear.

“We recommend taking your pet for exercise earlier in the day, before the fireworks go off in the evening,” she said.

“While fireworks are occurring, it’s important to keep your pet in a space where they feel safe and comfortable, as this will reduce fear and anxiety.”

“If your pet is seriously affected by the fireworks, our veterinary team can provide excellent advice and treatment to help you,” McArdle concluded.

About Keneth T. Graves

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