Summer and fall are busy times of the year with producers working against the clock and the weather to harvest a crop in top condition. While it’s often the favorite time of the year for many farmers, it’s also frequently an exhausting one. Putting in long hours can often make it difficult to stay alert and on the lookout for potential hazards. Here is a list of some reminders to help keep you safe this harvest season.
- When operating equipment, know where others are standing or working.
- Pay close attention to fatigue, drowsiness and illness.
- Always let someone know where you are. Check in regularly.
- Thoroughly inspect your grain bin and never enter alone. If you must enter, wear a harness that is attached to a properly secured rope.
- When driving on roadways, increase visibility by using equipment’s lights and flashers.
With all of the activity in the fields, this is also a time of year when rattlesnakes in our area are more active, and are prone to being disturbed. Be sure to wear thick boots when working and don’t reach into spots you can’t see. If a snake bite does occur, be sure to call ahead to the nearest hospital to make sure they have doses of anti-venom on hand. Winner Regional Healthcare Center keeps anti-venom in stock, but it’s still wise to call ahead in case more than one person has been bitten or the doses have been recently administered.
Most important is to simply develop a culture of safety. Talk frequently about safety, emphasize the importance of it and lead by example.