Fall harvest is here which means there is a lot to do with a small time frame to get it done. Limited time is never a reason to throw safety out the window though, so here are six tips to remember this harvest season to keep you and your family safe.
Take breaks and get enough sleep
Shut machinery off and walk around and stretch at least once every hour. This will help to stay attentive and focused while harvesting. It can be easy to try to keep working when fatigued, but this is also when you might start to cut corners and risk injury.
Turn off the machine
Anytime you are getting out of the machinery make sure to shut it off. Clogs happen, but always remember to shut off the harvester before attempting to fix the clog. Machinery entanglements are the leading cause of injury on the farm, so using shields or guards for all moving parts is also a great idea.
Have an emergency plan
Knowing where everyone is and when they should be back is super important in knowing when something is not right. Although we hope you never have to use an emergency plan, having one is better than not knowing what to do when the situation arises.
Do maintenance on equipment
This is crucial to keep things moving smoothly this fall season since repairs can keep farmers out of the fields longer. Along with maintenance should come a quick inspection of equipment before each use to ensure everything is running properly and ready to go.
Know where children are and train them properly
Most farms are family-run which means some of your workers can be young. Make sure they are trained properly and that you check in on them often to see how they are doing. For children that are too young to help create a safe play area for them that is away from machinery and equipment.
Practice grain bin safety
Never enter a grain bin alone, at least one other person should be on the outside of the bin but preferably two. Air quality within the bin can also be dangerous, so make sure to have a dust filter or filter respirator. Lastly, do not let children play in or around grain bins, carts or truck beds as they can become engulfed very quickly.
We hope you find these tips helpful and that you have a safe and successful harvest season.