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Audio: Pay attention to farm safety

Radio Transcript from Minnesota Farm Network, On the Farm radio show with Tom Rothman

Listen to the audio:

(5/16/2011) —This is Bev Durgan 'On the Farm.'

I hope farmers listening to this broadcast are in a tractor cab and the conditions are perfect for field work. This cool, wet spring has put a lot of pressure on farmers. Today I am going to remind everybody about the importance of farm safety during this busy time.

GPS, auto-steer and other technologies add precision to planting, but do not remove the dangers of drowsiness and being inattentive. The rush to plant crops in this cool, wet spring increases the need to pay attention to farm safety.

Agriculture is one of the most dangerous occupations in the United States. The National Safety Council says 700 farmers and ranchers die in work-related accidents each year and another 120,000 agricultural workers are injured. Most listeners to this broadcast probably know someone who has been involved in a farm accident. Not all accidents are preventable, but slowing down and paying attention to potential hazards will decrease the numbers.

The same warning goes to motorists. In Minnesota there were 140 collisions between farm equipment and vehicles in 2009. These crashes resulted in six fatalities. This time of year expect to see equipment moving on rural roads. Farm equipment gets bigger, heavier, wider and longer each year. Be prepared to see a farm vehicle over the next hill, around the next curve or entering the road way from the next field driveway. Please slow down and be ready to share the road with our farmers.

Take time to think safety this spring.

This is Bev Durgan on the Minnesota Farm Network.

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