FARMERS in Huddersfield are being urged to carry out risk assessments to prevent serious accidents on their farms.

The Health and Safety Executive has launched a CD ROM to help farmers and farm managers make their work safer.

It is hoped the free software will help farms become safer places to work.

Last year there were 137 serious injuries on Yorkshire's farms and three people died.

Roger Nourish, of the executive's agriculture and food sector said: "We have produced this self-assessment software to help improve the health and safety record of an industry that has one of the worst fatal accident levels.

"In the period from 1994/95 to 2003/04, 489 people were killed as a result of agricultural work activities and several thousand more were injured or became ill.

"This software simplifies risk assessment and is intended to help farmers apply good health and safety practices."

Robert Nobles, a Huddersfield spokesman for the National Farmers' Union, said: "Of course we welcome anything that will make farmers safer and keep them within the law.

"I don't think it will ever be possible to make the job totally safe, because of its nature," he added.

"Another problem in recent years - because the industry is suffering - has been people working alone.

"This can be dangerous, because if something happens it could be a long time before the alarm is raised."

To get a copy of the CD ROM phone the executive on 08701 545500 or download it from the website