People who work on farms are being urged to take care after figures revealed farming was the most dangerous industry last year.

The fatal accident rate in farming as 18 times higher than the UK industrial average according to the Health and Safety Executive.

In total, 30 people have been killed on British farms in the past year – making agriculture the riskiest industry to work in.

The main causes of death were struck by vehicles (30 per cent), trapped by something collapsing (20 per cent), struck by an object (17 per cent), contact with electricity (10 per cent), falling from a height (7 per cent), and injured by an animal (7 per cent).

Richard Wade, of Lycetts Risk Management Services, said: “It is worrying that agriculture remains one of the most dangerous industries, with the high fatality rate far-exceeding other industries.

“HSE’s research shows that vehicle-related activities consistently lead to more deaths than any other category, and that half of the workers killed by something collapsing were taking part in activities involving vehicles and machinery.

“So, while some of these deaths have been the result of freak accidents, many could have been prevented. Although this is a sad fact, this gives us hope that, with better practice on farms and safer use of machinery, incidents like this could become rarer.

“It is also promising to see that, although the fatal injury rate for agriculture has shown no clear trend over the past 35 years, there are signs of improvement over the past five years.

“Hopefully this is down to farmers being more vigilant about safety and risk assessments – but we still have a way to go.”

Agriculture has a 7.61 fatal injury rate per 100,000 workers – six times that of the construction sector.