Perhaps more than most other occupational groups, agricultural workers are often exposed to a wide variety of agricultural and environmental hazards. These hazardous conditions are potentially detrimental to both their wellbeing and health. Farmworkers and farmers are prone to respiratory diseases, physical injuries, skin disorders, chemical toxicity, noise-induced hearing loss, and burns. Fortunately, several precautions can be taken to eliminate or minimize these potential risks. Below is a compilation of health and safety tips to avoid such occurrences.
Always read the Manuals
Before anything else, it is very important to read the manuals. This is the simplest safety measure that you can take before leaping into action. Even when in a hurry, always take your time to read through and understand the manuals. After you buy any equipment, it is critically important to read the manuals so that you understand how to operate the machinery before pitting it to work. Another essential information on manuals is how to quickly shut down the machinery in the event of an emergency. Reading the manual can help enhance your safety by ensuring that you are well conversant and safe when using the equipment.
Keep Work Areas Clean and Tidy
Having a clean and well-organized work area allows you or other farmworkers to use the farm resources continually safely. A clean workplace translates to a more manageable and efficient work environment for you and other colleagues. Whether you farm crops such as grains or livestock, it is crucial to have clean equipment. Dirty or unorganized work areas always tend to cause unprecedented injuries. Ensure you do regular workplace checks and inspection to make sure all equipment in use is safe and suitable for farm work. As a farm manager or owner, it is important to ensure that your workplace is safe for people to work.
Store Your Produce Safely
There is much more to storing crops than just making sure that the harvest will last the winter. Safer handling of your crops is an important safety precaution that you should consider taking. If you don’t have the right equipment for the job, don’t attempt tasks such as grain drying and washing. Also, avoid overloading the washing or drying machines. Grains are especially important to handle professionally because of their high flammability. Besides ensuring that your product remains unaffected and suitable for human food, storing crops in the right environment ensures that your workers are safe.,
Keep Any Dangerous Material under Lock and Key
Agrochemicals are among the most hazardous products used in agricultural practice. These chemicals should be properly labeled and stored to prevent any accidents. Agrochemicals include fertilizers, cleaning products, and livestock medication. Proper labeling is very important to prevent any chemical accidents on people handling the chemicals. The labels should include the expiry dates and constituents of the containers. If not already done by the manufacturer, ensure that you label the containers immediately you receive them on your farm.
Learn First Aid Skills
When disaster strikes, first aid skills come in handy. Considering the safety risks in farms, it is prudent that you have all your workers and farm members get training on basic first aid skills. If it is important for office workers, then it is more important for farmworkers to be equipped with first aid skills. Among other safety precautions, ensure that the first aid kits are well distributed across the farm’s work areas.
Play By the Rules
To minimize the chances of accidents occurring on your farm, make sure that you strictly adhere to all regulations and laws regarding farming. Despite most of the rules being obvious, ensure that you are up to date with your farm’s legal requirements since they are there for a good reason. Have the correct signs, protective equipment, hygiene compliance, and other little things that make a huge difference between chaos and a safely run farm.
Proper training on how to handle and use agrochemicals and farm machinery is an effective way of ensuring that your colleagues and workers do not pose any health or safety risks to themselves when using the farm chemicals or equipment. Before any work, immediately after successful farmwork recruitment, have all your employees and other people on the farm get proper training on how to handle or use any hazardous machinery or chemicals.
Eric Reyes is a passionate thought leader having been featured in 50 distinguished online and offline platforms. His passion and knowledge in Finance and Business made him a sought after contributor providing valuable insights to his readers. You can find him reading a book and discussing current events in his spare time.