GFM Network News


Opinion: Pandemic stress and exhaustion are taking a toll on our farms

Everyone is feeling worn down but on farms, that ups the risk of an accident occurring

Reading Time: 3 minutes January is a weird month. It’s an optimistic time, with a new year bringing resolutions and a sincere hope for life to be better and brighter. But it’s also a dark and slow month on the Canadian Prairies — especially in the rural areas, on the often quieter farms so many of us call home. […] Read more

The province is offering a pair of programs that could help farmers or their workers obtain a Class 1 licence — a shortened training program for those with Class 3 licences and grants for unemployed Albertans wanting to be a commercial trucker.

Two new programs aimed at Class 1 licensing problems

Farm groups welcome reduced training option and grants for those wanting to be truck drivers

Reading Time: 2 minutes The provincial government has opened a pair of avenues that will make getting a Class 1 driver’s licence easier for some. New training rules — called Mandatory Entry Level Training (MELT) — were brought in following the Humboldt Broncos bus crash, which killed 16 people in April 2018. The accident prompted reviews of driver training […] Read more


The province needs to lower the barriers for farmers and farm workers seeking the Class 1 licence needed to operate a tractor trailer, say the chairs of 13 farm groups.

Class 1 licensing problems need to be addressed, say farm leaders

Costly new training requirements and testing backlog among the issues facing many farmers

Reading Time: 2 minutes More than a dozen farm groups in Alberta are calling on the province to further delay the implementation of new Class 1 licensing rules, and find ways to make it less costly for those farmers and their workers seeking one. Those new training rules — called Mandatory Entry Level Training (MELT) — were brought in […] Read more

Alberta rail crossings see many tragedies

Reading Time: < 1 minute The RCMP reminds Albertans to exercise caution near rail crossings. In 2019, Alberta had the second-highest number of total railway crossing incidents, accounting for 20 per cent of all incidents across the country. Of the 35 crossing incidents last year, 11 resulted in serious injury or death. The province also reported the second-highest number of […] Read more


Ford recalls 1.48 million pickups over transmissions

Washington | Reuters — Ford Motor Co. said on Wednesday it was recalling about 1.48 million F-150 pickup trucks in North America due to a potential transmission downshift issue that could increase the risk of a crash. Ford said select 2011-2013 model year trucks with six-speed automatic transmission could experience an unintended downshift into first […] Read more

Safety experts say the heels of your feet actually slip a little bit with every step. Add some wood shavings, sawdust, or other common construction debris and you’ve increased the odds of a “fall on the same level” 
— one of the most common causes of lost-time WCB claims.

The surprising hazard lurking at your feet

Slips and trips are commonplace ingredients in a large number of workplace accidents

Reading Time: 2 minutes Working safely with equipment gets a lot of attention — and rightly so — when it comes to preventing accidents on the farm. But there are also major hazards lurking by your feet, and this, too, is something you should think about before starting any building project on the farm. Falls account for one in […] Read more


A dummy filled with newspapers is placed over the power take-off shaft of the tractor.

PHOTOS: Kids learn a lesson about farm safety and machinery

The look on their faces said it all

Reading Time: < 1 minute Rural youth got an up-close and dramatic demonstration on what happens when clothing snags on a power takeoff shaft. A dummy stuffed with newspapers explodes in a millisecond — drawing gasps from the young onlookers. More than 750 students from rural Alberta attended Farm Safety Day, which is sponsored by AltaLink, at Calgary’s Stampede Park […] Read more

Fatality report highlights the many dangers of farming

The grim statistics are a reminder that some everyday activities can also be very hazardous

Reading Time: < 1 minute The language is plain, the numbers clear, and the take-home message is simple — danger is ever present on farms. Although run-overs, rollovers, and being pinned or struck by machinery account for 369 of the 843 fatalities in the latest Canadian Agricultural Injury Reporting report (covering the period from 2003 to 2012), tragedy strikes in […] Read more


Avoiding ATV rollovers on the farm

Reading Time: < 1 minute You may use an ATV for fun or for profit. But more importantly you should always use them safely. Rollovers happen alarmingly fast, so always wear a helmet, gloves, long sleeves, pants, and boots, even when only travelling a short distance. Inappropriate gear, such as loose clothing, can get caught on controls and doesn’t provide […] Read more

Stan Grad has been awarded the Alberta Order of Excellence, one of eight Albertans admitted to the order this year.

Tragedy spurs lifelong devotion to STARS

Reading Time: 2 minutes Instead of dealing with his grief privately after his youngest daughter Kristine died in a car accident, Stan Grad turned his efforts to fundraising for the Shock and Trauma Air Rescue Society (STARS). In 1990, Grad wrote to STARS about the loss of his daughter, who had been airlifted to the Foothills Medical Centre. “With […] Read more