The council celebrated National Farm Safety Week from March 14 to 20
Canada Safety Council (CSC) is highlighting the need for farmers and agricultural workers to keep machinery appendages clear of moving parts and making this area a high safety priority. This is because of the heightened exposure that farmers have to heavy machines.
“The agricultural industry relies heavily on machinery to make jobs easier and to stay on schedule,” said Gareth Jones, president of the Canada Safety Council. “When there’s a jam, a blockage or a malfunction, there can also be a temptation to reach in and fix it without thinking. But this is where preventable injuries happen and where we need to ensure that safe operating practices remain front of mind.”
The council warns workers never to perform maintenance of any kind of machinery while it is in operation and to ensure that the machine is fully powered off before working on it. This is to eliminate the concern of unexpected movement, whether from the machine operating incorrectly or from a jam being removed and the machine suddenly being back in motion, said the council.
To prevent injuries before they happen, CSC also suggests workers identify pinch points, where two objects or more move together in a circular motion and keep appendages away. They must also never wear rings while operating or repairing machinery; never test the temperature of gases, liquids or solids with their hands and to handle sharp tools and blades with an abundance of caution.
CSC also suggests they wear gloves when exposed to anything that could cause chemical burns or injuries, and when working around anything that can cut or scrape. However, steer clear of gloves around reciprocating or rotating machinery parts.
“Everyone feels safe up until the point of an incident, which makes it critically important to get ahead of injuries waiting to happen,” said CSC. “Safety must be incorporated into the farm lifestyle, early and often. Don’t let complacency or familiarity with the day-to-day operations of the farm affect your vigilance or awareness of your surroundings!”
CSC noted that their jobs require hard work that often includes specific safety risks, and thus specific safety precautions must be taken. The council celebrated the work that these workers do during National Farm Safety Week, from March 14 to 20.