BY LOUISE CONVERY
A MAN has died after accidentally falling into a slurry tank in Maghera on Monday.
The accident happened at a farm on Monday afternoon on the Curragh Road. The deceased man has been named as 79-year-old Glenny Hyndman, from Maghera.
It is believed he was working with his son on his farm when the accident happened and he fell into the tank.
The Health and Safety Executive have launched an inquiry into the accident and police have said they are not treating the death as suspicious.
“Sadly this incident highlights the dangers of working with slurry,” a HSENI spokesperson said. “Farmers should install safety slats to provide safe access for mixing slurry in the tanks. All openings into tanks should be guarded at all times.
“Detailed risk assessments should be prepared for the mixing operation to take into account the danger of hydrogen sulphide gas and other gases. Mixing points ideally should be located outside of the building.”
Ulster Unionist MLA Sandra Overend expressed her heartfelt sympathies to the Hyndman family. “I am deeply saddened to hear of the news of untimely and tragic accident that took the life of Glenny Hyndman,” she said.
“My thoughts and prayers are with his family during this difficult time. I have known Glenny for a number of years to be a loving husband, father and grandfather. He always had a smile and some friendly words to share. He was well-known and respected in the local community and this loss will be sorely felt.
“I have much admiration for farmers right across the country who are dedicated to their profession, come rain, hail or shine. It is all too easy to forget just how dangerous a profession farming actually is and it is sad that farm accidents have increased in number this year.”
Northern Ireland Agricultural Producers Association (NIAPA) Development officer, Jim Carmichael lives in the area, he extended his condolences to the Hyndman family and said the tragic accident once again highlighted the health and safety issues associated with a working farm. “The environment creates numerous opportunities for accidents and unfortunately many of these end in fatalities,” he said.
“A situation like this draws attention once more to the dangers involved in farming and it would be appropriate for others to consider all aspects of their working environment and ensure risks are reduced or eliminated where possible before commencing tasks.”
Magherafelt councillor Kate Lagan joined in the condolences. She said: “It is a tragedy for the family and they have the sympathy of the entire community.”