Hand Signals Useful for Farmers

  • Johnson, Steven B.;
  • Cyr, Dawna L.

  • Train employees in hand signals useful for agriculture.
  • Know hand signals useful for agriculture.

Work around either field or farmstead machinery is apt to be noisy and, if more than one worker is involved, risky as well. Communication between workers is essential to avoid confusion and possibly an accident.

For many years, hand signals have been used by the military, construction workers and factory laborers in communicating when voice communications are impossible or apt to be misunderstood. Uniformity in signaling is essential when many people must work together doing hazardous jobs.

You probably use more signals than you realize. However, uniformity is the key point and reason enough to get the farm crew together for a training session.

One person should study and learn the signals beforehand. This person will demonstrate them accurately and explain the circumstances when they are to be used. Each person, including family members, should have the opportunity to practice the signals. After learning the signals, use them whenever you can under real working conditions.

The following signals were developed by the Indiana Farm Safety Council, refined by the National Institute for Farm Safety and then adopted by the American Society of Agricultural Engineers as ASAE Standard ASAE S351, Hand Signals for use in Agriculture.

Publication #: 2335

This Maine Farm Safety Fact Sheet is part of an educational fact sheet series produced by the University of Maine Cooperative Extension. For more information on farm safety, contact your county Extension office.

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. More