August 25th, 2011

Former minister Jenő Gerbovits dies in tractor accident

Jenő Gerbovits, minister without portfolio in Hungary’s first government after the 1990 system change, died in a tractor accident on August 24.

The 86-year-old former Smallholder politician was driving his homemade tractor on his land in Zics (Somogy County) when the vehicle overturned on a slope, burying him underneath. He died at the scene.

Gerbovits was a Member of Parliament between 1990 and 1994 and minister without portfolio in charge of “compensation” (kárpótlás; the state compensation scheme for injustices committed against citizens’ private property during the previous system) between May 1990 and January 1991 in the government of József Antall. [index.hu]

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  • Farkas László

    How many men this has happened to the world over! The tillers of the soil used to be killed by kicks from their mules and horses. Tractors and combines just brought new physical risks. Sounds like he omitted to fabricate a “roll bar” or cage to protect the operator in the event of a turnover.

    • Viking

      Agree, my question is just how these machines can be allowed without a “roll bar”, then a tractor have a tendency to turn-over and they should be controlled and licensed like any other car
      But I still see these ‘death-traps’ roaming the Hungarian countryside

  • Farkas László

    Hi Viking,

    Looks like he built the tractor himself. Even if he didn’t, there are still plenty of the old style unprotected models around for a guy to get hurt on. It almost calls for safety legislation. I just hope other farmers learn from this tragedy and stay safe and productive.

  • Munkas

    It was late summer last year when I pushed my scooter 12 kilometers in the blazing sun on a busy road because it had “popped its clogs” due to the fact it was leaking oil that I didn’t replace which caused overheating and hence,
    “seizure”!
    My throat was as dry as a dust when I finally entered the local kocsma where a group of my friends had gathered.
    As I took a long cool drink of beer I noticed one of the local agricultural workers had mutilated his arm after an argument with a plough/tractor attachment.
    The arm was loosely tied up with a makeshift bandage and looked very bad indeed. But the man had no intention of visiting the hospital and sat there uncomplaining!
    This is life in the countryside/videk for all you powder puff city types that sit, sipping your Tokaji, reading newspapers in your bedroom slippers!

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