most severe farm accidents often involve machinery. Missing
guards and shields, failure to recognize hazards and careless
operation are common factors in a majority of farm equipment
attempt to build safety features into equipment. Some potential
hazards can't be completely eliminated without interfering
with machine function. For example, if the blades on a rotary
mower were completely shielded, they would not cut material!
maintenance programs keep equipment in good operating condition--a
proven factor in accident prevention. It is the responsibility
of machinery operators to recognize hazards and take the necessary
steps to protect themselves and others.
points are created when the edges of two objects move toward
or next to each other closely enough to cut relatively soft
material. Shear points are found on many types of crop cutting
equipment. Typical examples include forage harvester heads and
sickle bars on a variety of harvesting machines.
pieces of farm equipment-not specifically designed for cutting-also
harbour shear points. Grain augers fall into this category.
Stay clear of shear points when machinery is in operation,
and shut down all power when cleaning or adjusting equipment.
points on rotating parts can catch clothing, hands, arms and
points are created when two objects move together, with at least
one of them moving in a circle. This hazard is common in power
transmission devices such as belt and chain drives, feed rolls,
and gear drives.
pinch points are shielded on farm machinery. In the case of
such devices as feed rollers, shielding is not possible. Hands,
hair and clothing can be pulled into pinch points if caution
is not exercised. Always replace guards and shields.
seemingly smooth shafts can catch and wrap clothing.
exposed, rotating machine component is a potential wrap point.
Injuries usually occur when loose clothing or long hair catch
on and wrap around rotating shafts. Protruding shaft ends can
also become wrap points.
may appear to be smooth, but small nicks, mud, or rust increase
wrap potential. It is almost impossible to escape once wrapping
of clothing begins, because of the power involved. The more
you try to pull away, the tighter the wrap becomes.
present typical crush points.
points are created when two objects move toward each other,
or when one object moves toward a stationary object. Crushing
accidents often victimize a second person, during such operations
as hitching. Several crush point injuries and deaths are recorded
every year. Avoid getting into a position that could lead to
body parts being crushed by objects that are moving toward each
other. Constant alertness is vital.
heavier a revolving part is, the longer it will continue to
rotate after power is shut off. This characteristic is called
'free-wheeling.' Rotary mower blades, baler flywheels and various
other farm machinery components will continue to move after
power is shut off--often for several minutes.
occur when operators shut off equipment, and attempt to clean
or adjust a machine before components have completely stopped
moving. Operator awareness is the key to safety around free-wheeling
can pull you in faster than you can think to let go.
injuries usually occur when someone tries to remove plant material
or other obstacles which have become stuck in feed rolls or
other machinery parts. Many limbs have been lost by farmers
who were trying to unclog an operating corn picker. Once the
material is freed, it can pull a person into the machine faster
than they can react. Always shut off power
to clear plugged equipment.
of ground or chopped grain may be thrown hard enough to cause
farm machines throw material as a natural part of doing their
job. Foreign objects, such as stones, sticks and other debris,
may be taken into this equipment and expelled at tremendous
speed. Bystanders or animals in the path of thrown objects could
be seriously injured. If available, use guards or deflectors
to reduce the hazard.
or stretched springs store considerable energy.
Springs are commonly used to help lift equipment, as shock absorbers,
and to keep belts tight. Springs may harbour potentially
dangerous stored energy.
Always exercise caution when servicing
dismantling equipment, release any tension on the spring (if
possible). Position yourself away from the direction of spring
travel if the spring is compressed in any manner.
systems store considerable energy, often at pressures in excess
of 2,000 pounds per square inch. Careless servicing, adjustment,
or replacement of parts can result in serious injury.
pressure blasts of hydraulic oil can injure eyes or other
body parts. Follow instructions in the operator's manual to
the letter when servicing hydraulic equipment. The following
precautions are crucial:
certain the hydraulic pump is turned off.
attached equipment to the ground.
that load pressure is off the system.
leak in an hydraulic hose is a serious hazard. A leak may not
be visible, and the only sign may be a few drops of fluid. Never
inspect hydraulic hoses with your hands, because a fine jet
of hydraulic fluid can pierce the skin. Use a piece of cardboard
to check for leaks.
and falls are responsible for many farm workplace injuries.
They become immensely more dangerous around equipment. A simple
slip may result in your being thrown into the path of oncoming
equipment, or into fast moving machinery parts.
and falls often result from:
machinery mounting and dismounting practices.
footing on the ground or the machinery.
steps and work platforms.
for slips and falls can be greatly reduced by using good judgment
and practicing good housekeeping on and around equipment.
Publication #: F-017
and recommendations contained in this publication are believed
to be reliable and representative of contemporary expert opinion
on the subject material. The Farm Safety Association does not
guarantee absolute accuracy or sufficiency of subject material,
nor can it accept responsibility for health and safety recommendations
that may have been omitted due to particular and exceptional
conditions and circumstances.
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