Cork farm contractor: Thugs are bringing industry into disarray with dangerous TikTok videos 

Cork farm contractor: Thugs are bringing industry into disarray with dangerous TikTok videos 
IFA warning on TikTok videos

A CORK agricultural contractor has slammed videos of agricultural machinery being used dangerously for social media hits.

Cork contractor Timmy O'Brien is a founding director of the Association of Farm and Forestry Contractors in Ireland.

He was speaking to The Echo about a new craze of videos being uploaded to social media site TikTok, showing people recording themselves in dangerous situations with machinery.

The Health and Safety Authority is now trying to identify those in the videos which are being shared online.

Mr O'Brien said: "The industry is being brought into disarray by these thugs.

IFA warning on TikTok videos
IFA warning on TikTok videos

"This is only bravado and showing off by these people."

He said the timing of the videos comes after positive exposure for the agricultural contract industry on Monday night with a slot on Crimecall to highlight the dangers of the silage season.

The videos have now brought a negative spotlight on the industry, he argued.

Anyone engaged in such activity should be "named and shamed, and sacked straight away", Mr O'Brien said.

One video shows a tractor being driven with a person on its bonnet, while another shows a person on the chute of a silage harvester. 

Other videos show people driving quad bikes precariously, dancing in front of a bull, and driving tractors and other machinery at speed.

IFA warning on TikTok videos
IFA warning on TikTok videos

Mr O'Brien said contractors feel "let down" by people acting so irresponsibly around machinery.

The videos have also been criticised by the president of the Irish Farmers Association, Tim Cullinan.

He said: "Too often, people are not willing to act responsibly and identify the risks. All farmers and contractors need to make it clear to their employees that engaging in these practices is a sackable offence."

Eight people have died on Irish farms so far this year.

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