The recently published standard, AS 5340:2020, “Livestock loading/unloading ramps and forcing pens” has been developed to help promote consistency across the farming sector. This safety standard assists the many agricultural businesses in Australia using livestock ramps. Alongside the expertise of industry, the pre-existing Australian Livestock and Rural Transporters Association (ALRTA) Guidelines for Ramps and Forcing Yards helped steer the development of the standard, which was published by Standards Australia with the safety of workers front of mind.
The guidance aims to promote safe practices in the more than 85,000 agricultural businesses across Australia that may be using livestock ramps.
“We hope this standard helps to improve safety and build confidence across rural regions and within the many farming communities,” says Roland Terry-Lloyd, head of standards development at Standards Australia.
The initial development of the standard came after communities were left shaken by the death of a transport worker while unloading livestock on a loading ramp in October 2013.
“We have seen significant support from all sectors of the industry as this work has come together,” says Terry-Lloyd.
“The standard has had plenty of industry input and by utilizing the Guidelines for Ramps and Forcing Yards to steer the guidance, the resulting standard is an important benchmark for the manufacturing and use of livestock ramps,” says former ALRTA vice president and chair of the Animal Welfare Committee, Michael Debenham.
“This guidance will assist to create safer workplaces for both livestock and our workers through consistent information for owners, manufacturers, and regulators across the country,” continues Debenham.
“Standards Australia will continue to work proactively with the agriculture sector to further equip rural communities with the tools to help them carry out their essential work and better protect workers across the country,” concludes Terry-Lloyd.