Warning to walkers after man struck by forage harvester
WALKERS have been warned of the danger posed by agricultural machinery after a man was seriously injured by a forage harvester near Wimborne.
A 41-year-old man from the town was struck by a harvester in field of maize in Hampreston at 11.30am on Sunday morning.
The man was airlifted to Southampton General Hospital and his condition is described as serious but stable.
A spokeswoman for Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance said his right leg was amputated at the scene.
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It is believed that the man wandered into the path of the machine while trying to retrieve his dog after it strayed into the tall crop. The dog was unharmed.
A police spokesman said: "Dorset Police would like to remind the public that dangerous farm equipment is being extensively used in fields for harvest at this time of year, and advise that bridleways and public footpaths are strictly adhered to."
The warning was reiterated by NFU spokesman Ian Johnson.
"The countryside is a pleasure to walk in but it is also a working environment where animals graze and machinery is routinely used. As with any workplace, it is important that people are aware of the dangers and take precautions to minimise them - particularly with dogs as their movements can be difficult to predict," he said.
Mr Johnson added: "Although this type of accident is very rare, it is a tragedy for the person injured, for their family and for the driver. Our sympathies go to all involved."
Officers are making enquiries to establish exactly what happened and are keen to speak to a man who assisted at the scene and left his brown fleece jacket there.
Anyone with information is urged to contact DS Ian Fletcher of Bournemouth CID on 101, quoting reference number 14:216, as soon as possible.