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Staying Safe in an Agriculture Workplace David W. Smith Farm Safety Programs Texas Cooperative Extension Texas A&M University System.

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Presentation on theme: "Staying Safe in an Agriculture Workplace David W. Smith Farm Safety Programs Texas Cooperative Extension Texas A&M University System."— Presentation transcript:

1 Staying Safe in an Agriculture Workplace David W. Smith Farm Safety Programs Texas Cooperative Extension Texas A&M University System

2 What makes agriculture work dangerous? Environment Environment Personal factors Personal factors Work activities Work activities Social, economic and political factors Social, economic and political factors

3 Environmental Factors Weather Weather Work sites overlap with residence, office Work sites overlap with residence, office Delayed response of emergency service Delayed response of emergency service Isolation from others Isolation from others Difficult to maintain good personal hygiene Difficult to maintain good personal hygiene Hazards and exposures not monitored (noise, vibration, lighting, dusts, etc.) Hazards and exposures not monitored (noise, vibration, lighting, dusts, etc.)

4 Personal Factors Young children frequently exposed to hazards beyond their understanding Young children frequently exposed to hazards beyond their understanding Senior workers continue working despite physical limitations Senior workers continue working despite physical limitations Work sometimes pushes physical limitations Work sometimes pushes physical limitations Routine medical surveillance uncommon Routine medical surveillance uncommon

5 Work Activity Factors Long work hours Long work hours Erratic work pace Erratic work pace Irregular work routine Irregular work routine Trade learned by observation and experience Trade learned by observation and experience Work activities dependent on uncertainty of weather Work activities dependent on uncertainty of weather

6 Social, Political, and Economic Factors Day care often not an option Day care often not an option Absence of health and safety regulations Absence of health and safety regulations Long-held cultural belief that little can be done to improve safety Long-held cultural belief that little can be done to improve safety Safety attitude stems from culture and outcome of experience performing dangerous activities Safety attitude stems from culture and outcome of experience performing dangerous activities

7 Who is at risk of injury? Co-workers Co-workers Visitors Visitors Family members Family members Subcontractors Subcontractors Farm animals and wildlife Farm animals and wildlife

8 What are the dangers? Tractors Tractors Machinery and implements Machinery and implements Livestock Livestock Electricity Electricity Chemicals Chemicals Fires Fires Ponds and open water bodies Ponds and open water bodies Sun exposure Sun exposure Material storage facilities Material storage facilities Manure pits Manure pits ATVs ATVs

9 Tractor Hazards Overturns Overturns Runover incidents Runover incidents Highway accidents Highway accidents Falls Falls Contact with other objects Contact with other objects

10 Tractor Overturns Accounts for over half of all tractor fatalities Accounts for over half of all tractor fatalities Occurs when the tractor’s center of gravity falls outside of it’s base of stability Occurs when the tractor’s center of gravity falls outside of it’s base of stability Includes both side and rear rollovers Includes both side and rear rollovers

11 Physics of Tractor Stability

12 Side Overturn

13 Rear Overturn

14 Preventing Tractor Overturn Injury Drive at appropriate speeds Drive at appropriate speeds Lock brake pedals together when on highway Lock brake pedals together when on highway Set wheel tread as wide as possible Set wheel tread as wide as possible Stay away from steep slopes Stay away from steep slopes Don’t drive on soft shoulders Don’t drive on soft shoulders Keep front-end loader loads low to the ground Keep front-end loader loads low to the ground Drive forward down hills and back up hills Drive forward down hills and back up hills Equip tractor with rollover protection and wear seatbelt Equip tractor with rollover protection and wear seatbelt

15 Tractor Runovers Major Causes of Runover Accidents Major Causes of Runover Accidents –Bypassing the ignition switch to start tractor –Failure to set parking brake on slope –Falling or jumping off of tractor –Failure to acknowledge bystanders

16 Preventing Runover Accidents Only start tractor while sitting in the seat Only start tractor while sitting in the seat Don’t disable safety switches Don’t disable safety switches Place guard on starter terminals to prohibit bypassing Place guard on starter terminals to prohibit bypassing Always set parking brake before dismounting Always set parking brake before dismounting Look for bystanders before starting tractor Look for bystanders before starting tractor

17 Tractor Highway Accidents Most tractor accidents occur: Most tractor accidents occur: –During planting and harvesting seasons –Between 3 pm and 6 pm –Where posted speed limits are greater than 50 mph Most caused because of excessive speed of other vehicles Most caused because of excessive speed of other vehicles

18 Safe Operation on Highways Make sure the tractor is safe to drive (steering, brakes, etc.) Make sure the tractor is safe to drive (steering, brakes, etc.) Make tractor visible to other drivers (SMV emblem, flashers, lights) Make tractor visible to other drivers (SMV emblem, flashers, lights) Drive at controllable speeds Drive at controllable speeds Stay off of soft shoulders Stay off of soft shoulders

19 Machinery and Implement Hazards PTO and drive shaft entanglement PTO and drive shaft entanglement Contact with rotating parts Contact with rotating parts Pull-in injuries Pull-in injuries Crushing injuries Crushing injuries Electrocution Electrocution

20 PTO Entanglements Usually occurs when clothing, hair or jewelry gets caught on bolt of drive shaft Usually occurs when clothing, hair or jewelry gets caught on bolt of drive shaft Results in multiple, severe injury, loss of limb, strangulation, and/or death Results in multiple, severe injury, loss of limb, strangulation, and/or death PTO’s turn from 540 to 1000 revolutions per minute PTO’s turn from 540 to 1000 revolutions per minute

21 PTO Safety Replace all damaged or missing PTO shields and drive shaft covers Replace all damaged or missing PTO shields and drive shaft covers Wear tight-fitted clothing Wear tight-fitted clothing Put up hair Put up hair Remove all jewelry Remove all jewelry Don’t climb over or under drive shafts Don’t climb over or under drive shafts

22 Other Machinery Hazards Shear and cut points Shear and cut points Pinch points Pinch points Wrap points Wrap points Crush points Crush points Free-wheeling points Free-wheeling points Pull-in points Pull-in points Springs and chains Springs and chains Hydraulic systems Hydraulic systems

23 Machinery Safety Don’t wear loose clothing around moving parts Don’t wear loose clothing around moving parts Never reach over or work near rotating parts Never reach over or work near rotating parts Turn off machinery before performing maintenance Turn off machinery before performing maintenance Never rely solely upon a machine’s hydraulic system to keep equipment suspended Never rely solely upon a machine’s hydraulic system to keep equipment suspended Replace all missing and damage shields Replace all missing and damage shields Never place yourself between a tractor and implements when hitching Never place yourself between a tractor and implements when hitching Never crawl under a machine or implement without first chocking or blocking Never crawl under a machine or implement without first chocking or blocking Never allow anyone near a chain when it is under stress Never allow anyone near a chain when it is under stress

24 Livestock Hazards Crushing injuries Crushing injuries Property damage Property damage Diseases Diseases Parasites Parasites

25 Livestock Considerations Vision Vision –Cattle have near-360-degree panoramic vision –Horses and swine have near-300-degree field of vision Hearing Hearing –More sensitive than humans –Loud noises frightening –High-frequency sounds painful.

26 Livestock Considerations Temperament Temperament –Each animal has its own personality –Become uncomfortable when personal space is threatened –Routine is calming Instinct Instinct –Females become aggressive when offspring are threatened –Males aggressive when herd threatened and during mating period

27 Livestock Diseases and Parasites Brucellosis Brucellosis Tetanus Tetanus Ringworm Ringworm Salmonella Salmonella Leptospirosis Leptospirosis Rabies Rabies Trichinosis Trichinosis Lyme Disease Lyme Disease  Keep vaccinations current  Wear boot coverings when on other farms  Isolate sick animals from the herd  Keep children and visitors away from sick animals

28 Livestock Safety Maintain a non- threatening distance Maintain a non- threatening distance Use a calm voice and deliberate movement Use a calm voice and deliberate movement Don’t startle the animal Don’t startle the animal Never prod an animal that has nowhere to go Never prod an animal that has nowhere to go Don’t be abusive Don’t be abusive Stay away from newborns Stay away from newborns

29 Electricity Hazards Contact with overhead transmission lines Contact with overhead transmission lines Absence of proper grounding Absence of proper grounding Overloaded circuits Overloaded circuits Damaged wiring Damaged wiring Missing safety shields Missing safety shields Center pivot irrigation systems Center pivot irrigation systems Pond pumps Pond pumps

30 Contact with Power Lines Many workers have been electrocuted when moving irrigation pipe (20 feet sections) and contact overhead power lines Many workers have been electrocuted when moving irrigation pipe (20 feet sections) and contact overhead power lines Workers also electrocuted when moving grain augers and when contacting power lines with front end loaders Workers also electrocuted when moving grain augers and when contacting power lines with front end loaders

31 Electrical System Maintenance Can you identify any problems? Can you identify any problems? Metal + electricity – water protection – grounding = an accident waiting to happen Metal + electricity – water protection – grounding = an accident waiting to happen

32 Extension Cords Don’t use extension cords in wet areas Don’t use extension cords in wet areas Don’t try to repair them, replace them Don’t try to repair them, replace them Don’t use them to tie or secure objects Don’t use them to tie or secure objects Never run over cords with vehicles Never run over cords with vehicles Unplug cords from outlets when not in use Unplug cords from outlets when not in use

33 Chemical Hazards Pesticides/herbicides Pesticides/herbicides Anhydrous ammonia Anhydrous ammonia Water well contamination Water well contamination Fertilizers Fertilizers Animal medicines Animal medicines

34 Spraying Chemicals Read and follow chemical material safety data sheets (MSDS) Read and follow chemical material safety data sheets (MSDS) Wear appropriate personal protective equipment Wear appropriate personal protective equipment Follow label instructions for mixing and cleanup Follow label instructions for mixing and cleanup Warn others of your intent to spray Warn others of your intent to spray Have an emergency plan in place Have an emergency plan in place

35 Anhydrous Ammonia Used as a fertilizer in agriculture and a coolant in food processing Used as a fertilizer in agriculture and a coolant in food processing Stored as a liquid under pressure Stored as a liquid under pressure Will freeze-burn skin upon contact Will freeze-burn skin upon contact Vapors will burn skin, eyes, and can be fatal at high concentrations Vapors will burn skin, eyes, and can be fatal at high concentrations

36 Anhydrous Ammonia Theft Key component in production of methamphetamines Key component in production of methamphetamines Often stolen from temporary storage tanks located on farms and dealerships Often stolen from temporary storage tanks located on farms and dealerships Usually stolen in small quantities, multiple times, to avoid detection Usually stolen in small quantities, multiple times, to avoid detection

37 Fire Hazards Fueling and fuel storage Fueling and fuel storage Electrical problems Electrical problems Heaters Heaters Dry, dusty confinement areas Dry, dusty confinement areas Hay storage Hay storage Machinery Machinery Welders and torches Welders and torches

38 Fueling and Fuel Storage Store fuel tanks at least 40 feet from buildings and barns Store fuel tanks at least 40 feet from buildings and barns Ground storage tanks in case of direct lightning strikes Ground storage tanks in case of direct lightning strikes Never fuel a hot tractor or vehicle Never fuel a hot tractor or vehicle Post no-smoking signs that are clearly visible Post no-smoking signs that are clearly visible Erect barriers around tanks to prevent vehicles from running into them Erect barriers around tanks to prevent vehicles from running into them

39 Hay Baling and Stacking Allow cut hay to dry sufficiently before baling Allow cut hay to dry sufficiently before baling Uncured hay will increase cause temperature to increase in bales or hay stacks resulting in spontaneous combustion Uncured hay will increase cause temperature to increase in bales or hay stacks resulting in spontaneous combustion Provide adequate ventilation around hay stacks to avoid overheating Provide adequate ventilation around hay stacks to avoid overheating Keep hay stacks at least 100 feet from buildings and don’t park tractors near stacks Keep hay stacks at least 100 feet from buildings and don’t park tractors near stacks

40 Tractor Fires Oil, grease, dirty rags, and trash on machinery can result in devastation. Oil, grease, dirty rags, and trash on machinery can result in devastation. Be sure to grease and oil machinery on a regular basis. Be sure to grease and oil machinery on a regular basis.

41 Material Storage Hazards Engulfment Engulfment Asphyxiation Asphyxiation Suffocation Suffocation Falls from elevated surfaces Falls from elevated surfaces Contact with conveyance machinery Contact with conveyance machinery

42 Grain Bin Engulfment Grain inside a bin can form a crust on top, that when broken can engulf a person in a matter of seconds Grain inside a bin can form a crust on top, that when broken can engulf a person in a matter of seconds Never enter a grain bin without proper lifeline support Never enter a grain bin without proper lifeline support Always let coworkers know when you must enter a grain bin Always let coworkers know when you must enter a grain bin

43 Asphyxiation Stored silage will release toxic gases during the drying process Stored silage will release toxic gases during the drying process Opening the top of a silo from the top could result in asphyxiation and cause you to fall Opening the top of a silo from the top could result in asphyxiation and cause you to fall Always wear proper respiratory equipment Always wear proper respiratory equipment

44 Other Dangers ATVs ATVs Ponds Ponds Irrigation canals Irrigation canals Uncapped wells Uncapped wells Sun exposure Sun exposure Heat Heat Snakes, spiders, bees, etc. Snakes, spiders, bees, etc.

45 ATV Safety Never carry extra riders on an ATV not designed for passengers Never carry extra riders on an ATV not designed for passengers Attend an ATV rider safety course Attend an ATV rider safety course Know the limitation of the ATV Know the limitation of the ATV Always wear a helmet, long pants, gloves, and riding boots Always wear a helmet, long pants, gloves, and riding boots

46 Ponds and Open Water Never swim in an irrigation canal or unfamiliar pond Never swim in an irrigation canal or unfamiliar pond Post no-swimming signs Post no-swimming signs Install a safety post with rope and flotation device at the edge of ponds Install a safety post with rope and flotation device at the edge of ponds

47 Sun Protection Wear a wide- brimmed hat and long sleeve shirt Wear a wide- brimmed hat and long sleeve shirt Wear sunscreen Wear sunscreen Drink plenty of water Drink plenty of water Perform difficult tasks in the morning or evening Perform difficult tasks in the morning or evening

48 Things that bite, sting, and cause rashes Rattlesnake Yellow jacket Black widow Mosquito

49 For more information on these topics visit the Agricultural Safety and Health web


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