Harvest season is here, and that means that farm safety is more important than ever. Careless mistakes can lead to injuries and even death.
A recent Purdue University study revealed that a total of 23 farm deaths were reported in Indiana in 2011; the leading causes of death were overturned tractors and farm machinery running over workers. In 2010, approximately 6,700 non-fatal farm injuries were reported in Indiana. Some of these injuries involved amputations, head injuries, and spinal cord injuries.
Farming is one of most dangerous jobs in the United States. According to The National Safety Council, the occupational death rate amongst farmers is 31.6 per 100,000 laborers. In non-farm industries, this number is 3.5 deaths per 100,000 workers—meaning that farming is nearly 10 times as dangerous as most professions.
Tips for Farm Safety
This time of year, a farmer’s job can easily start at sunrise and end well into the evening, so getting enough sleep is imperative. Drowsiness can slow down reaction times, and no one wants to fall asleep while operating heavy machinery. Take regular breaks to stay focused.
Check over all equipment to be sure that it is clean and operating safely. Follow owner’s manual instructions and wear safety belts. Make sure that children stay out of dangerous work areas.
Use proper safety equipment. Rollover protective structures could have prevented all of the fatalities that resulted from overturned tractors. Be sure that proper safety techniques are understood and employed by everyone working on the farm.
Sharing the Road
Drivers will want to exercise extra caution as they share the road with cornpickers, combines, tractors, and other equipment. Before passing farm machinery, make sure that the driver is not turning left and isn’t facing any mailboxes, signs, etc. that may create the need for the equipment to move to the middle of the road. Be patient and try to stay as visible as possible—farmers will often pull to the side of the road to allow you to pass if they are able to do so.
If you or someone you love has suffered from an injury sustained in a farming accident, call the lawyers at Schuerman Law to learn how to get the justice and compensation you deserve. Simply call 800-274-0045 to schedule your free consultation today.
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