Reminders for Farm Safety Week 2018
At SERVPRO of West Brown County, we serve more than just Green Bay and the surrounding cities. We know our community includes a lot of rural and farm areas. That's why National Farm Safety Week (September 16th-22nd, 2018) is so important to us.
And knowing that, we would like to take a moment to talk about safety on the farm. Farmers are some of the most hard-working, conscientious people out there and we understand they take safety very seriously each and every day. However, it never hurts to go through some of the big safety issues every once in a while!
The National Farmers Union (NFU) has a lot of great information for farm workers to stay safe and healthy while on the job. The NFU provides advice for several, potentially, dangerous situations on the farm.
Here are a few of those situations, with some safety reminders:
- Grain Bins – According to the NFU, Grain Bins accidents are a leading concern on farms. People can sink into, or become trapped by grain, leading to suffocation and other injuries. The NFU advises:
- Drying and cooling grain properly to ensure it stays in good condition, flowing smoothly.
- Be knowledgeable about proper grain bin entry procedures.
- Stay clear of grain augurs in operation.
- Use lock out mechanism to shut off power to augurs.
- “Tag Out” to ensure other works know someone is in the bins.
- Tractors – Tractors are an essential tool of the trade for farmers, but they can pose risks from accidents and rollovers. So, it’s important to take this advice:
- Ensure rollover protection structures are installed on all tractors (particularly those predating 1985).
- ALWAYS wear your seatbelt.
- ATVs – Like tractors, ATVs are often essential for farm work. They help workers get from point a to point b in an efficient manner. However, they also pose accident and rollover risks. So, remember:
- Children under 16 should never operate ATVs with engines over 90 CC.
- You must follow all the manufacturer’s safety guidelines.
- Single riders only…do not carry passengers.
- Wear a helmet.
- Ensure the ATV has lights and reflectors on it to ensure visibility.
- Livestock – Many Northeast Wisconsin farms are home to livestock like cows and pigs. These animals bring hazards with them, just like equipment can. The key is knowing how to handle them.
- Make sure to provide all herding animals with gentle guidance. Be a dominant, gentle leader. The NFU says cows, for example, follow simple commands like a hand on the back.
- Respect an animal’s “flight zone.” This is the area of personal space in which the animal is comfortable. It’s often 5-25 feet around the animal, depending on how often it’s handled.
- NEVER trust a bull. Always be on alert around bulls and work with the in two-person teams.
- Chemicals – Handling different chemicals often comes with the territory on farms. So, to avoid illness or injury, follow the NFU’s guidelines for doing so safely:
- Get proper training on the chemicals.
- Read any relevant safety material.
- Wear protective equipment like gloves and goggles, when necessary.
- Store chemicals safely.
- Always wash your hands after handling chemicals, even if you were wearing gloves!
- Fatigue -According to the National Farmers Union, the number one danger on a farm is fatigue. Being over-tired paves the way for accidents and injuries that might not happen otherwise. So be sure to get your rest!
So, during Farm Safety Week (and always), we ask that our local famers stay safe out there and know that we appreciate all you do!