Farm equipment and machinery manufacturers do a pretty good job at ensuring their products are safe by equipping them with safety guards.
But even still, you know that the agricultural work you do presents many hazards.
Many times, Ohio farmers suffer injuries because of human error from taking a shortcut, ignoring warning signs, not paying attention or simply not following the safety rules.
So here’s a list of some common hazards, along with some safety recommendations to help reduce your risk of injury while operating equipment and machinery on your Ohio farm.
Download our FREE Guarding with Farm Equipment Checklist to help you comply with OSHA’s agriculture machine guarding requirements.
Shear Points and Cutting Points
Shear points occur when the edges of two objects move close together and can cut soft material. (example: auger)
Cutting points occur when an object moves forcefully and is able to cut. (example: sickle blade)
To avoid injuries, remain alert while operating machines with shear and cutting points. Also, advise others to watch out because some cutting machinery can throw objects while in use.
Pinch points are created when two rotating objects move closely together, one moving in a circle.
Hands and feet can get caught in pinch points, or other body parts can get pulled into pinch points when loose clothing becomes entangled in the machine.
To avoid injuries, wear tight-fitting clothing and never reach over or work near rotating parts. Also, identify places where pinch points can occur and avoid these areas.
When exposed machine parts rotate, they create wrap points. Loose clothing can get caught in the moving parts, and consequently pull workers into the machine.
To avoid injuries, shield potential wrap points before beginning your work. If wrap points cannot be shielded, paint them a bright color to remind yourself that they are there.
Crush points occur when objects move toward one another, or one object moves toward a stationary object. Workers can be crushed in between.
Some equipment with moving parts continues to spin after being shut off.
To avoid injuries, wait until the machinery has completely stopped before touching it. This can take several minutes.
When servicing, adjusting or replacing parts on machines with hydraulic systems, workers can face high-pressure blasts of hyrdaulic oil.
This can cause injury and/or burns to the skin.
To avoid injuries, do not inspect hydraulic hoses with your hands because the hydraulic fluids can puncture the skin.
Bottom LineEven with the best safety policies and trainings in place, accidents can still happen.
Take the time to become familiar with the potential hazards you face on your Ohio farm, and educate all of your farmers on safety precautions they need to take to avoid injury.
In addition, make sure you have the right farm insurance policy in place to protect you from liability in the event that an injury happens on your Ohio farm.
I’m Patrick O’Neill, the President and CEO of The O’Neill Group and an Agribusiness and Farm Insurance Specialist. I’ve had the pleasure of protecting all sizes and types of farms and agribusinesses across Ohio, including the largest Dairy supplier in the region.
Call me at (330) 334-1561 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a brief meeting at a time that's convenient for you. I look forward to hearing about your farm / agribusiness and discussing risk management strategies and solutions to protect you, your family, your business and your farm.
Components of this article were adapted from Zywave.