TOKYO, August 9 – The farm ministry of Japan has recently created virtual reality (VR) videos that offer a virtual experience of accidents in the agriculture, forestry, fisheries sectors, and the food industry. These industries have higher accident rates than others, and the videos aim to raise safety awareness further. The Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (MAFF) also anticipates using the movies in training by prefectures and local agricultural cooperatives.
MAFF produced six 3-minute VR videos on accidents in four sectors-livestock, food manufacturing, wood, and fishing-in collaboration with private companies. For example, the video for the livestock industry workers offers a virtual experience of a cow attack that broke your ribs while you’re cleaning a barn. The scene is followed by an explanation of measures to prevent accidents, like making sure that cows are tied to something before you start the cleaning and marking cows with a rough temper in advance.
To watch the video, you need to download a smartphone app from the ministry’s website. You will also need VR goggles, which are available at home appliance stores for around 500 to 2,000 yen. The MAFF website also offers several non-VR videos on work accidents for use in group training.
According to MAFF, the number of casualties per 1,000 workers in 2019 was 5.2 in agriculture (including livestock), 20.8 in forestry, 10.6 in timber and wood products manufacturing, and 5.7 in food manufacturing. These figures are more than double the average for all industries (2.2). “Please watch the videos and take them seriously,” said MAFF.