The message is simple, but often overlooked: be careful. Purdue University’s Agricultural Safety and Health Program recently released their 2012 report and Dr. Bill Field of Purdue says its findings didn’t give the best of news to Hoosier farm families.
“After several years of a downward trend, we bumped up to 26 actual on-farm accidents. Then there were also nine incidents involving collisions between motorists and farm equipment on public highways.”
Field told HAT that there is an age group more susceptible to farm fatalities.
“We saw an increase in the number of cases involving those over the age of 60. Those farmers are intending to do those mundane chores like mowing ditch banks and running wagons. They are the ones who are seemingly most vulnerable to having a fatality.”
For several years, Indiana has been number one in grain entrapments and fatalities. Field said that statistic tends to be misleading.
“It’s not because we have more than Illinois, Iowa or Minnesota. It’s because we’ve been more aggressive in identifying these cases and including them in our database.”
As of June 30th of this year, the United States had seen more grain entrapments than for all of 2012. Field said getting the right education and being cautious cannot go overlooked, which is why they are offering classes to beginning workers.
“It’s a day long class that focuses on how to work in the industry safely. There’s going to be a lot of focus on personal protective equipment, dressing properly, and then some of the features about grain facilities that are hazardous. Then also, what are they going to do if they a problem? What response do they take?”
Safe Grain Storage and Handling for Youth and Beginning Workers Schedule:
September 30, 2013 – Brock Manufacturing in Milford, IN
October 2, 2013 – Beck Educational Center in West Lafayette, IN
October 16, 2012 – FFA Leadership Center in Trafalgar, IN
Those interested in more information on Purdue University’s Agricultural Safety and Health Program or on the classes listed above should visit www.farmsafety.org.