Food. You can’t live without it. Which means, you can’t live without farms either. But while you might picture life on the farm as peaceful and almost serene with acres and acres of unspoiled nature surrounding you and fresh air, 24/7, farming is, in all reality, one of the most dangerous jobs there is.
The Barnes Firm injury attorneys point out that the U.S. Department of Labor estimates that thousands of farm workers get seriously injured on an annual basis. Hundreds of these injuries will result in death. Some of the most common farming accidents are due tofarm machine entanglements, tractor overturns, suffocation, falls, and even defective equipment and tools. Not exactly the idyllic situation you might have imagined.
In fact, according to a recent report, farmers are faced with all sorts of hazards, dangers, and risks on a daily basis. That’s why you must be expected to be vigilant and cautious about the risks involved in the agriculture trade regardless of which type of farming you engage it, be it crop production, aquaculture, animal production, or a combination of all three.
That said, these some of the serious farming accidents that are more common than you think.
Farm Accidents Caused by Reptiles and Venomous Animals
Aside from trenches, holes, and dark corners, snakes and other poisonous animals like scorpions, can be discovered inside farm produce piles. This is especially true for farms in deep southern climates.
Snakes, scorpions, rats, and spiders can be found inside wood logs and ridge heaps also. Scorpions are especially fond of hiding in ridges means for root crops like yams. This is especially true of subsistence farming where not a lot of mechanized equipment is used. In this case, farmers are more likely to come into direct contact with potentially deadly critters and insects.
You need to always be aware of your surroundings when placing your hands in cool, dark spaces.
Heavy Machinery and Tractor Overturns
Said to be very difficult to operate, some farm equipment and tractors pose the danger of overturning and/or rolling over. According to statistics, tractor rollovers are the predominant cause of farmer fatality in the U.S. alone.
The U.S. Department of Labor states that 44 percent of all farm worker accidents involve a tractor rollover. This is why it’s important to keep your machinery in tip-top condition and to operate it with safety foremost in mind.
Lots of farm worker accidents that turn fatal are directly linked to asphyxiation and suffocation. Beside the risk of working around wheat, grain, soybean, and other crop bins, farm structures are notorious for having low ventilation levels which can lead to oxygen deprivation.
Therefore, it’s important to maintain proper ventilation in all on-site farm structures.
Just like the construction industry, falling accidents are one of the leading causes of death on the farm. Farm workers are expected to climb great heights when working on trees or scaling barns, and even standing atop grain silos.
Falls from these heights can result in traumatic brain injuries, broken bones, and other severe injuries that eventually can lead to death. Do not attempt to scale any of these heights without a safety harness.
Pesticide and Toxic Chemical Exposure Accidents
Severe injury caused by overexposure to toxic chemicals, including common pesticides cause almost as many serious injuries and deaths to farm workers as falls and tractor rollovers. What’s important to keep in mind is that injury from chemicals doesn’t necessarily come from short-term exposure, but instead, exposure in the long-term.
When this happens, breathing problems begin to occur due to “farmer’s lung.” Also, skin rashes can show up along with persistent vomiting. Proper ventilation masks must be worn at all times when exposed to dangerous chemicals on the farm.
Limb Crushing Accidents
All too often, farm worker’s limbs will get caught inside agricultural machinery and be crushed and/or severed. Many of these accidents, like tractor overturns, occur everyday on the U.S. farms.
It’s not hard for fingers, limbs, feet, and other bodily extremities to get caught up in chains, gears, and farm equipment pully mechanisms. Never attempt to repair a machine while it’s still operating.
Heat Stress/Stroke Accidents
Working on a farm means working in the hot sun. While heat can make hard work all the more uncomfortable it can also make it quite deadly. Heart stress and stroke can lead directly to dehydration, dizziness, heat cramps, issues with the heart, confusion, and more. This can be especially true of farm workers who are 65 years of age and older.
If any of these heat-related symptoms occur, you must be immediately rushed to an emergency room before they get worse.