I like to send out one news release highlighting farm safety in the spring and fall every year. Farm safety is so important to those working, their families, and those using rural roadways. Be sure to think about how to be safe this spring and beyond. Almost all of the following information and statistics is sourced from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Website. Every day, there are 167 agricultural workers that suffer a lost-work-time-injury. Five percent of these injuries result in permanent impairment.
Although agriculture is safer than it once was, it still ranks among the most dangerous industries. Those working on farms risk fatal and nonfatal injuries, work-related lung diseases, noise-induced hearing loss, skin diseases, and certain cancers from prolonged sun and chemical use. Many of the mechanical, chemical, and environmental hazards increase the risk of accidents. There were 374 farmers and farmworkers who died from work-related injuries in 2012. The leading cause of death for farmers and farmworkers was tractor overturns.
Unfortunately, we continue seeing injuries and fatalities in the agricultural industry and often they can be prevented. Almost everyone working in the agricultural area knows of someone who has been injured or has died as a direct result of a farming accident. Farm equipment is safer than it used to be, but there are still injuries and fatalities that can occur.
Often youth are utilized to help out with the farm work. Be sure to look out for their interests by keeping them safe. Always think of how to safely operate the machines and equipment before they start. In 2012, an estimated 14,000 youth were injured on farms, 2,700 of these injuries were due to farm work. On average, there are 113 youth less than 20 years of age that dies annually from farm-related injuries, with the most prevalent age group being those from 16 ?Äì 19 years of age. Of the leading sources of fatal injuries to youth, 23 percent involved machinery (including tractors), 19 percent involved motor vehicles (including ATVs), and 16 percent were due to drowning. Be sure that those working on your farm don?Äôt become one of these statistics!
Those using the roadways should also take extra precaution when driving because there will be numerous tractors and slow moving vehicles on the roadways. Good luck with the spring fieldwork and please remember to take things slowly and exercise safety in your daily work