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CONSUMED BY FUMES HAZARDS OF AGRICULTURAL GASES. Learning Objectives Understanding the types of respiratory hazards Identifying hazardous atmospheres.

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Presentation on theme: "CONSUMED BY FUMES HAZARDS OF AGRICULTURAL GASES. Learning Objectives Understanding the types of respiratory hazards Identifying hazardous atmospheres."— Presentation transcript:

1 CONSUMED BY FUMES HAZARDS OF AGRICULTURAL GASES

2 Learning Objectives Understanding the types of respiratory hazards Identifying hazardous atmospheres –Manure Pits –Silos Measuring Gases

3 Respiratory Hazards Three categories: –Particulate contaminants Dusts, Mist, Fumes –Gases and vapors Chemicals –Oxygen-deficient atmosphere

4 Hazardous Atmospheres Can Be: –Flammable –Asphyxiating –Toxic Hazardous Environments on the Farm –Silos –Manure pits

5 Manure Pits Enclosed structures –Near or below an animal house facility or open structures 75 fatalities from 1975 – 2004 Most of these fatalities resulted from asphyxiation Rescuers account for over 60% of confined space fatalities

6 Manure Pit Gases Hydrogen Sulfide –Greatest danger with enclosed pits –Rotten egg smell but higher concentrations deaden the sense of smell –Collects in lower levels of structures –Released when manure is agitated –Levels of 500 ppm or greater can cause death

7 Manure Pit Gases Ammonia –Non-toxic and heavier than air –Distinctive Sharp Odor –Can irritate the eyes and throat –Higher concentrations can cause wheezing and shortness of breath –Less of an immediate concern because the strong persistent odor discourages long contact

8 Manure Pit Gases Methane –Non-toxic and lighter than air Odorless, colorless Forms explosive concentrations in air When ventilation is inadequate can displace oxygen and cause asphyxiation

9 Manure Pit Gases Carbon Dioxide –Non-toxic and heavier than air Odorless, colorless Normal product of decomposition and animal respiration When ventilation is inadequate can displace oxygen and cause asphyxiation

10 Decreasing the Risk of Exposure Ventilation –Force fresh air into the space –Use fans Never enter the space unless necessary –Always test gas levels –Wear harness and safety gear –Make sure another individual is with you outside the pit

11 Conventional Silos Structure –Concrete Staves held together by steal hoops –Also reinforced with concrete, steel and other materials Nitrogen is most abundant gas –Bleach like odor –Low lying yellow, red, or dark brown fumes –Settles at the top of the silage, flows down the chute, collects in adjoining structures –Forms within hours after forges are ensiled

12 Oxygen Limiting Silos Structure –Constructed of a dark blue or green enamel coated steel –Also made of poured reinforced concrete –Designed so entry is unnecessary Fermentation produces both Nitrogen Dioxide and Carbon Dioxide –CO2 is odorless and colorless –When levels are high, individuals can be overcome quickly

13 Decreasing the Risk of Exposure Proper Ventilation –Keep Doors Closed –Use Fans Timing –Avoid Silos during critical periods 12 and 72 hours after filling If possible two to three weeks after filling –If you do have to enter wear a self contained breathing apparatus, and maintain visual contact with a second person outside Personnel Personal Protective Equipment Signage

14 Gas and Vapor Sampling Detector Tubes Diffusion Tubes Electronic reading instruments

15 Benefits of Detector Tubes Shows results in a minute “Grab Sample” –High concentrations that need immediate readings –H2S or NH3 in manure pits –CO poisoning Photo: GMS Instruments Photo: Terra Universal

16 Diffusion Tubes Direct reading measure –Takes hours to get reading Do not use in IDLH concentrations (Immediately Dangerous to Life & Health) Photo: Grainger

17 Protection and Safety: Electronic Reading Instruments Instantaneous readings Accurate to the concentration Can be expensive

18 Summary Not all environments on the farm are safe. Gases can overcome those exposed very quickly. Ensure that you and your fellow workers are trained on proper safety techniques. Know how to test and monitor gases so you are safe at all times.

19 References Dangers of silo gases. (2012) Farm and Ranch eXtension in Safety and Health (FReSH) Community of Practice. Retrieved from gases.http://www.extension.org/pages/64390/dangers-of-silo- gases Manure Storage Safety –http://www.extension.org/pages/19943/manure-storage- safety#.UoY8lI154iU Respiratory Protection –http://www.extension.org/pages/63440/respiratory-protection-on-the-farm- and-ranch#.Up41UY155is

20 For More Information OSU Ag Safety & Health The Ohio State University Ag Engineering Building 590 Woody Hayes Drive Columbus, Ohio Phone: Website: agsafety.osu.edu

21 This project was supported by the USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) Rural Health and Safety Education Grant Program- grant number


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