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PSP Group Somerset Regional Office

PSP Group expand in Somerset

 

PSP Group are delighted to announce our continued expansion with the opening of our new Somerset Regional office.

The expanded team of nine includes five experienced client advisors who enjoy visiting business owners or managers to provide a free insurance portfolio review. The new offices are situated on a small rural business park with easy access to both the M5 and A303. In fact perfectly placed to serve businesses in Somerset and adjoining counties.

 

Our team of experienced business insurance advisors are led by local directors Alison Wilmot and Steve McCarthy, and we invite you to make contact with them and explore what PSP Group can offer your business.

 

PSP Group Somerset Regional Officesomerset regional office

 

 

With Farm Fatalities rising over 70% in the last 12 months which lets face it is a shocking devastating and worrying statistic and it recently being farm safety awareness week, what can you do to protect yourself, your families and your workers?

This time of year can be exhausting for agricultural workers, with pressure of the weather being somewhat unpredictable and needing to race the clock to get things completed it is understandable sometimes risks can be taken

It is widely acknowledged that farming can be a very dangerous occupation, daily challenges are faced with contributing factors of long hours, fatigue, stress and isolated working conditions in many circumstances.

A quote from a Health and Safety Executive Inspector was hard to ignore….’In 20 plus years of doing his job he had only investigated ONE incident which could not have been genuinely unavoidable’

Quite a statement you will agree?

We all know farms can be hazardous places machinery constantly on the move, feed wagons and milk tankers in and out at all times of the day and night.

By taking the time to read if you haven’t already, or if you have take the time to refresh your memory on things like SAFE STOP when using a farm vehicle could save an incident from happening.

Take a minute to put a helmet on before jumping on a quad bike

No one wants to be thinking if only I did it that way, that may not have happened.

With these incidents on the rise, we can only expect more potential visits from the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

Incidentally it was just announced in the Farmers Weekly 3rd May 2021 their costs per hour have risen from £124 to £154 per hour.

Fees For Intervention were introduced in 2012, meaning businesses are charged for the costs of an investigation from the time a material breach is identified to the point when a decision is made on the enforcement action. Farmer’s Weekly estimate that on average, an inspector will spend 6 hours on one investigation.  Meaning the average cost of one investigation is £950

At PSP Group, we have access to a product called ‘Rural Protect’ which you may have read about, the product has many features and benefits, one of which is fees for intervention cover which essentially will cover the cost of the HSE Fees if they arrive at your farm for an inspection.  Please be aware it will not cover any ‘fine’ costs but it will cover court costs if needed limits will apply.

The policy can be sold in isolation and the premiums start at around £300 per annum, it is very quick and easy for us to obtain a quotation for you, don’t waste any time give us a call today 01566 777710.

 

Account Executive Shelley Madge, who is based at our Launceston office-
Shelley’s career in insurance started with a local farm insurance broker. Having been with PSP since April this year, she prides herself on forging good relationships with her clients and is always keen to ensure prospective clients have the right cover for their requirements.
 
Predominantly covering the Devon and Cornwall area, Shelley attends local markets and events to keep ahead in the farming world! She can be found every Wednesday at Holsworthy Market in the PSP office and is always happy to help with any type of insurance enquiry … Pop in & say Hello
Our Somerset Local Director Alison Wilmot
“I was brought up on a dairy farm in Devon and have been involved in farming in one way or another all my life. I also have my own stud/smallholding, and we regularly show the ponies throughout the southwest.
I have been in the insurance industry for more years than I care to remember, with specialist knowledge in farming and rural business’s. I know and understand the challenges we in the rural community face, and enjoy working and speaking to clients to make sure you have the best advice and insurance cover available at a competitive price.”
Contact Alison on 07960 875976
Introducing one of our newest team members PhilippaElvy
 
“I have lived in and been involved in the countryside all my life and have links to the farming community. I have a strong equestrian background and have 3 horses of my own and am regularly out competing across the country.
 
I’ve been in the insurance industry for several years, specialising in farm and rural insurance. I am fully aware of the challenges faced by the rural community and really enjoy working alongside rural clients to make sure everything that is important to them is covered correctly.”
 

Despite the Covid-19 crisis and the several lock-downs we have had over the last year, criminals are still targeting the Countryside and are become more brazen about it. Farmers are having to go to extra lengths to ramp up security and protect their livelihoods.

PSP Group are always looking to help our rural community in any way we can so we have put together some top tips for keeping your farmyards safe and your business running smoothly.

 

Datatag Machinery

Police often find farm machinery that they think has been stolen but has usually been stripped of its identifying marks. Years ago nearly all agricultural machinery stolen would be found in the same county, but these days it is often destined for abroad. Around £1m worth of farm machinery is stolen from farms every week and is heading straight out of the country making it impossible to recover.

Tractors are being shipped out of the UK not only to Europe but as far afield as Australia and Africa.

Datatag and Cesar use unique layered security markings, which include microdot scattered around the vehicle, this makes it much easier to identify within a very short space of time and reunite it with the owner.

If you are unfortunate enough to have any of your farm machinery stolen you need to report it to the police as quickly as possible and provide as much information as you can including makes and models, colour, registration plate serial number, chassis and engine number and Cesar number.

Farmers that use security marking within Datatag and Cesar schemes, are enabling the true identity of stolen kit to be established and this will go a long way to having it recovered and returned to them.

 

Fertiliser

Failure to report either missing or stolen batches of ammonium nitrate (AN) fertiliser from your farm could mean prosecuted under anti-terrorism laws. This could lead to up to 3 months in jail or a hefty fine.

To avoid having to deal with a missing or stolen fertiliser you should always store it inside a locked building whenever possible. Make sure it is stored away from and out of view of the public highway and don’t leave it in fields or anywhere there is public access overnight.

Make sure you have a record of any manufacturer code numbers from the bags and a keep note of the resistance test certificate numbers if they are available. Always report any stock discrepancies to the police immediately.

Farmers and Landowners need to be responsible for making sure fertiliser doesn’t get into the wrong hands and they must report anyone who is suspiciously asking to buy fertiliser from them.

Firearms

Farmers have a responsibility for safe gun ownership. There are 1.9m lawfully held firearms in the UK. Farmers whose guns are stolen or lost could face prosecution and have their firearms certificates revoked, if reasonable measure to secure them haven’t been followed. The most common places for firearms to be stolen are from vehicles, while burglary is second.

The Firearms Rules 1998 require all firearm and shotgun certificates to be produced with the statutory condition that firearms and ammunition “must at all times be stored securely so as to prevent, so far as is reasonably practicable, access by an unauthorised person”.

If you one of your guns is lost, stolen or missing you must report it to the policy immediately, with details of make, model, serial number, bore and the details around how it has gone missing.

Livestock

Keeping Livestock safe is becoming increasingly challenging whether it be from thieves or the general public walking their dogs across farmland, especially if they graze far from your main yard and buildings.

To help protect your livestock from thieves you should regularly check fields with livestock and keep all hedges, fences and gates in good repair. If able then the gates should always be closed and locked, as well as making sure the shed and stockyard gates are also closed and locked.

Always make sure livestock are tagged, identification is essential for proof of ownership and it can help to deter thieves. Things like ear tags, earmarking, tattooing, Freeze branding or microchips can put criminals off staling livestock. Taking photos or videos of valuable animals with the brand or tags clearly visible can also help. Keep recent and accurate records of all your livestock, this will help keep tabs on what is going in and out if the farm.

Dog walkers are becoming an ever-increasing issue with livestock owners. Making sure you have visible signage around your livestock requesting dogs to be kept on leads can make it clear to walkers that it is dangerous for their dogs to be off the lead. Checking livestock regularly that are situated on land that has public footpath access is also a must to keep on top of what is going on.

If you have an incident these should be reported to the police immediately.

 

Farm Yard and Farm House.

As a farmer your work is your life and often you live on your farm. Having a stranger come on to your property and steal and damage your belongings can affect you psychologically as well as physically. Not only have your belongings been stolen or damage you now don’t feel safe in your own home or at your workplace.

There are some steps you can take to keep your house and farm secure and to deter criminals.

Make sure you invest in some good locks for your doors and widows in your house and around the farm. Make sure gates are always locked when you’re not around. Often placing concrete blocks or rollers in gateways that are not being used regularly deters trespassers.

Be aware of unfamiliar people come and going, driving into or around the farm, stopping and asking unusual questions or trying to sell you machinery. Always report any suspicious activity to the police as soon as possible.

Keep logs of tools around the farm and valuables around the house, this can be descriptions or photographs. This makes it easier if an incident has occurred, to recover items.

Security lights around entrances to building and your property can be a great deterrent for criminals and can often alert you to something going on. CCTV is also a great way to put criminals off entering your property. Technology has evolved and some of the CCTV systems available aren’t too costly and they can alert you via your mobile phone if activity is detected.