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                FARM SAFETY
SPRING 2021 ❁ BC HOLSTEIN NEWS 9 For Everybody's Benefit
 Achieving Farm Safety is NO ACCIDENT
Teresa Born, Human Resources Manager, WestGen
Organizations and farmers can access Teresa’s HR expertise through Proventus. She believes in supporting employees and employers to do and be their best!
  Agriculture is one of Canada’s top employers, accounting for more than 2.3 million jobs. It is also one of the top three most hazardous industries in the country. Every year, Canada mourns the loss of about 100 adults and 12 children due to agricultural fatalities.
As farmers we care about the people who work for us and want them to feel and be safe. Both physical and psychological safety are vital. When our employees are unsure about how to do things, their work potential may be limited by fear and anxiety. Protecting the people who work alongside us is part of farm risk management.
Mostproducersthinkofriskmanagement only in terms of production, marketing and financial risk. While these are important to the success of the farm business, often overlooked are the human resources risk and the seldom mentioned possibility of accidental death and injury faced by producers, their families and employees, every day. Beyond the devastating consequences of death or injury on account of a farm accident, employers know that there are also serious financial, psychological and relational costs.
Data from the Bureau of Labour Statistics shows that a majority of farm-related fatalities and injuries occur from May through October, with peak injury periods during planting and harvest. Unintended,
simple actions and shortcuts can have dire, irreversible consequences.
As a farm manager or owner, it is up to you to ensure that everyone has the knowledge and skills to prevent injuries and fatalities on the job. With the majority of farm fatalities and injuries involving vehicles, defensive driving is critical to the safety of operators moving farm equipment. Check to see that all machinery and equipment is operating properly and that all shields covering moving parts are in place on tractors, implements and other equipment.
Training of all employees in safety protocols is critically important. Don’t assume that new employees know how to do things just because they have worked on a farm prior to becoming your employee. Things are done differently from farm to farm.
You can use this step-by-step process to train an employee on a job task:
• Explain how and why a particular task is performed.
• Demonstrate the correct way of performing a task. Review the task at a normal pace and repeat it at a slower pace, pointing out the various steps along the way, and answering questions.
• Point out potential hazards associated
with the job and ensure you explain safety procedures and regulations. Check to make sure the new employee understands them.
• Have the new employee perform the task while you watch.
• Check in with the new employee often for the first few days or weeks.
•If necessary, have someone interpret your orientation and training.
Create and use a new employee orientation checklist to ensure you do not forget anything.
Adequatesignageonallfarmsitelocations is key to safeguarding your employees. Ensure that First Aid emergency numbers are posted in multiple locations and that your address is included in the signage. When accidents and injuries take place, people are in fight or flight mode and often do not have the capacity to think clearly. At times like this, when it is so important to relay details, people can draw a blank. Having this information posted clearly on signage could save lives.
Land Line or Cell Phone:
Most employees have cell phones today, but if at all possible, have a land line on farm. Some farms require workers to check their phones ‘at the door’ upon arrival to work. Many farms are located
in rural locations where cell coverage is spotty. You want to have confidence that there will be, at all times, a phone that is working and readily available for employees in case of emergency.
Safety First Always:
Involve children in farm safety checks. Talk to children about dangerous areas. Make sure they understand which areas are off limits. Remind them of the rules on a regular basis; listing the rules once is not enough. Devote an entire day to family safety instruction. It is important that everyone develops a “safety first” attitude on the farm. Just as “town” kids who visit a farm need to be taught farm safety rules, “farm” kids need reminders that safety is a concern no matter where you are.
Even if all precautions are taken, accidents can still occur. Take extra time, slow down, and prevent those that can be avoided. Ensure that farm safety protocols are in place and understood by everyone on your farm. We care about the people on our farms. Let’s do all we can to ensure their safety.
    In Case Of Emergency Phone
Farm address

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