following script can be used to deliver a 15-minute training
session to employees. You may wish to use some props ( e.g.
tractor to demonstrate proper mounting technique. )
The text emphasizes important points related to avoidance
of slips, trips and falls. It is suggested that you try to
stay strictly on topic. Obviously, you will need to be prepared
to answer questions.
of the danger
all work areas free of clutter that could cause a
use the 3-point technique for mounting and dismounting
tractors and other equipment.
extra careful working around equipment when footing
Slipping on an icy surface or tripping over some old boards
stacked in a walkway can have serious consequences. In fact,
a substantial number of farm workplace injuries-and even some
fatalities-have resulted from what we might think of as a simple
Following are some examples that we can all relate to:
his way back to the hay mow, a young, inexperienced worker
trips over some twines that were left in the aisle. He falls
through a bale "throwdown" hole, and breaks several bones
as a result of landing on the concrete floor below.
the end of a long day in the field. The tractor driver shuts
down his machine, then jumps from the platform to the ground.
He twists his ankle upon landing, and is on crutches for
oil slick remains on the shop floor following repairs to
a tractor's hydraulic system. No one takes the time to cover
it with sand or cat litter, or clean it up. A worker slips
on the slick surface, and gashes his forehead on the edge
of an adjacent work bench.
rain has knocked out the main power grid. A farmer is using
a PTO generator to provide lighting in the barn. While checking
on the equipment, he slips on a patch of ice and falls onto
the PTO shaft, with fatal results.
fictitious, these are the kinds of incidents that could easily
happen in just about any farm workplace. Management definitely
has a responsibility to eliminate "slip and trip" hazards to
the greatest extent possible. Workers need to adopt habits that
will reduce their chances of being injured in a fall.
- Learn to recognize potential "slip and trip" hazards.
- Take steps to eliminate the hazards. Check with your
supervisor if you come across something that you feel could
be a threat to sound footing.
- Stay alert, and think about your actions-remember to
"look before you leap" !
- Keep all aisles and walkways free of clutter and debris.
Follow the principle of, "a place for everything, and everything
in its place".
- Clean up oil spills and other slippery materials immediately.
- Set aside a few minutes to put tools away and clean up
debris at the end of the day. Work is more efficient and
enjoyable in a clean, well organized environment.
- Keep feed throwdown holes covered when not in use. Install
guard rails around clean-out openings in multi-floored poultry
- Spread sand and/or salt on icy surfaces if work has to
be done in the vicinity. If the weather is particularly
bad, consider putting the job off until conditions improve.
- Keep steps and platforms of tractors and other equipment
clean and dry. Take the time to clean off mud, ice, snow,
manure, grease, and other debris that can accumulate on
these surfaces. Don't carry tools, chains, etc. on the platform.
- Slip-resistant safety footwear is a must for all
The above are but a few examples of "good housekeeping" practices
that should be followed to minimize "slip and trip" hazards.
You can probably think of several others. It is really important
to develop an awareness of potential hazards, and take the necessary
steps to eliminate them before
someone gets hurt.
Take extra care around machinery
Slips, trips and falls around farm equipment can have fatal
consequences. We've already stressed the importance of keeping
steps and platforms clean. Here are some additional points to
consider when working with machinery.
Think, then act
Never jump from a tractor. There is always the danger
of catching clothing on pedals, lever, or other protruding parts.
You could land on an uneven surface and injure your ankles,
legs, or back.
Always use handrails, handholds, and steps to mount or dismount
tractors and self-propelled equipment. Follow the 3-point
systemeither two hands and one foot, or one hand and
two feet on the machine at all times.
- Never try to operate equipment from any position other
than the seat! Maintain safe operating speeds, and take
a break when you are tired. Never allow passengers to
ride along! They are much more likely to fall from a
Always shut the power off and pocket the key before making
repairs and adjustments. That way, if someone does fall onto
the equipment, they won't become entangle.
Take extra care when operating stationary equipment (grain
augers, generators, grinder- mixers, etc.) Stay well clear of
the machinery while it is running. Try to maintain good footing
in the surrounding area.
Most falls are needless and preventable accidents. You need
to be alert on the job, and develop awareness of what could
constitute a "slip and trip" hazard.
It is vital to "THINK" about actions before you take them. That
way, you'll be more likely to recognize hazards, and take the
steps necessary to eliminate or avoid them.
Are there any questions?
Finally, let's take a moment to review some of the "Do's" and
"Don'ts" of fall prevention.
aisles and walkways free of clutter.
the 3-point system when mounting or dismounting equipment.
about actions before you take them.
oil slicks uncovered.
from a tractor platform.
tools to accumulate on a tractor's platform.
the tools on the workbench when you finish using them.
The information 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
Inc. 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.
Copyright © 2002
Farm Safety Association Inc.
22-340 Woodlawn Road West, Guelph, Ontario N1H 7K6 (519) 823-5600.
Disclaimer and Reproduction Information: Information in
NASD does not represent NIOSH policy. Information included in
NASD appears by permission of the author and/or copyright holder.