Farming has always been a hazardous job with many risks not seen in other industries. Because of this, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed a proclamation in 1944 to bring more attention to the plight of the everyday farmer. The goal of this proclamation was to reduce farming injuries as their steadily increasing numbers were hindering the war effort. That proclamation is now known as National Farm Safety Week. This year, National Farm Safety Week runs from September 17 through September 23.
In spite of this increased focus, agribusinesses represent one of the most dangerous industries in the country. For example, over 400 farmers and farmhands died from work-related accidents in 2015. While these numbers are grim, the farming industry is experiencing improvements in safety and decreases in injuries. To continue this trend, the National Farm and Safety Week theme is focusing on implementing safety best practices. Below is a summary of events for the week:
- September 18: Tractor safety
- September 19: Farmer health and wellbeing
- September 20: Health and safety of children
- September 21: Confined spaces
- September 22: Rural thoroughfare safety
Below are some highlights of each segment to help farmers improve safety and reduce risks.
- Tractors and transportation accidents are the most common cause of death on farms. Tractors rolling over represent a significant amount of these incidents. As such, farmers should make use of roll over protective structures (ROPS).
- Relating to farm transportation, farmers should implement safety practices to reduce run over incidents and PTO entanglements as well.
- Farmers should also avoid risky shortcuts. The potential time saved is not worth the risk. Maintain vehicles and fix mechanical issues to reduce the temptation to make use of a dangerous bypass.
Many farmers experience health issues later in life. Some are hard of hearing while others may require oxygen. However, farmers can avoid many of these health concerns by wearing personal protective equipment (PPE). This includes:
- Eye protection
- Hearing Protection
Farmers should also look after their mental wellbeing in addition to their physical health. Isolation is a leading factor in depression so farmers should take their mental health seriously.
Health and Safety of Children
Each year, around 110 children and teenagers die from farming incidents. Causes range from machinery incidents to ATVs to drowning and more. This particular day will focus on creating areas that are safe for children to play as well as educating farmers on how to make farms safer for kids.
Farmers encounter hazardous gas and entrapment dangers when entering manure or grain pits. This particular day will focus on how to store and access grain as well as how to enter manure pits safely.
Rural Thoroughfare Safety
When farm vehicles and passenger vehicles collide, there are grievances on both sides. Instead of focusing on who is at fault, this day will concentrate on ways farmers and passengers alike can reduce the risk of an accident.
Cline Wood is dedicated to improving farm safety. As the leading provider of agribusiness insurance, we can help farmers identify and reduce risks. To learn more, contact us.
This document is not intended to be taken as advice regarding any individual situation and should not be relied upon as such. Marsh & McLennan Agency LLC shall have no obligation to update this publication and shall have no liability to you or any other party arising out of this publication or any matter contained herein. Any statements concerning actuarial, tax, accounting or legal matters are based solely on our experience as consultants and are not to be relied upon as actuarial, accounting, tax or legal advice, for which you should consult your own professional advisors. Any modeling analytics or projections are subject to inherent uncertainty and the analysis could be materially affective if any underlying assumptions, conditions, information or factors are inaccurate or incomplete or should change.agribusiness, agrisafety, farm safety, farming risk