As the end of the summer approaches us we move on to the next season, harvest season. Harvest season is filled with countless hours spent in trucks, tractors, combines and other farming equipment. Approximately 1,854,000 full-time workers were employed in production agriculture in the US in 2012. Agriculture is ranked one of the nation’s most hazardous industries. The agriculture industry is unique in how a majority of farms are family owned and operated. These farmers are at high risk of injuries. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, in 2012, 2,700 youths were injured due to farm work.
At PayneWest we know how important this time of the year is for our farming clients. We want to help you with your coverage as well as some safety tips to make this critical time as safe as possible.
- Read operators manuals.
- Install Slow-Moving Vehicle signs.
- Wear seat belts.
- Put equipment in neutral or park, engage parking brake and turn off engine before dismounting. Wait until all mechanisms have stopped moving before attempting to service or unclog a machine.
- Locking hydraulic cylinders or supporting the head prior to working under it is always recommended.
- Limit riders on equipment! Instructional seats are designed for training or diagnosing machine problems.
- Keep all guards in place.
- Take breaks. Get enough sleep.
- Train all operators to safely operate the equipment.
- Fatigue, stress, medication, alcohol and drugs cause you to not focus on tasks.
- Have all safety equipment in proper condition and ready to use such as safety glasses, hearing protection and respiratory masks.
- Have Rollover protective structures fitted on tractors.
More information can be found at http://www.cdc.gov/niosh/topics/aginjury/default.html