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Farm Safety: All Work and No Play?

The following post is submitted by Tracy Schlater from Farm Safety 4 Just Kids, a non-profit organization in North America which provides resources and training to individuals and communities to conduct farm safety awareness and education programs. Today’s topic talks about the importance of emphasizing safety while working and in recreation.Kid on ATV

In this day and age, most farmers and ranchers are aware of the potential hazards in their line of work. Ask any farmer and they’ll tell you to avoid the power take off while running equipment and to ventilate well when working around manure pits and lagoons. Farmers know how dangerous their work place can be at times.

But what about kids? Safety is a major concern when they are “on the job.” But farms and ranches are one of the only places where the “job site” is in the front yard. Do you make safety a priority when the job site turns into their play ground?

Two-thirds of kids hurt on the farm are not working at the time of the accident.

ATVs were once used strictly for work purposes. Now they serve as recreation – and the source of 17 percent of fatal accidents among kids on the farm. Go back even further and horses were solely used for farm work. Now they too are used for fun. And kids living with livestock have a significantly higher injury rate than those that don’t.

Farming is a 24/7 job. You don’t “clock out” at the end of the day – and the dangers don’t disappear either. You supervise your kids when they’re working. It’s just as important to keep an eye on them when they aren’t.

For more information on tractor safety, visit Farm Safety 4 Just Kids at www.fs4jk.org.

Do you educate your children on the hazards of ATVs and other recreational vehicles?

Kayla’s Farm Life Lesson #7

AGCO’s Blog contest winner, Kayla, was inspired by AGCO’s recent Farm Dog Contest in writing her February post.

Farm Life Lesson #7: Every good farm needs a good dog

I admit it.  There is something about a puppy that gets me every time.  And a beautiful dog?  He will just melt my heart.  AGCO’s  Farm Dog Photo contest has had me in puddles!  What a great looking group of dogs.  It makes me think of our Ranger.

It was a year ago that I went with my Farmer Husband on an equipment run.  We were going to pick up a new ATV for Kayla's Farm Dogthe farm.  On the way home, we swung by a place that had puppies for sale.  Cute, fluffy, adorable golden retriever puppies.  We were hooked.  Heading home with us was Ranger, a retriever named after our new ATV.  Ranger proved true to his name, too.  That ATV is his favorite place in the world.

The other night we got home and couldn’t find Ranger.  We looked and called for him late into the night.  This just wasn’t like him.  I attempted to prepare the kids for the worst.  Early the next morning, farmer husband went out searching again.  There was a group of land surveyors on our fields, and he drove over to ask if they had seen anything.  They pointed up ahead to their boss.  He was driving an ATV similar to ours.  And sure enough, as Farmer Husband pulled up, Ranger’s head popped up from the guy’s floor board.  Crazy dog had made himself at home with a new friend.

It made me think about farm dogs.  They are our workers.  They are our protectors.  They guard, herd, help, or maybe just tag along.  But most of all, they are our friends.  You could see the love in all of the contest photos.  It appears “man’s best friend” is especially appreciated out on the farm.

Where is the craziest place you have ever found your farm dog?

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