Think About It! #ATVSafety


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ATV 2015

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A better way to do things, ergonomics matters!

Let me first start with the definition of ergonomics if you are not familiar. Ergonomics is the study of people’s efficiency in their work environment. So if farmer Fred gets shooting back pains when he lifts a 5-gallon bucket to feed his cattle, then ergonomics will tell Fred what he needs to do to avoid the pain and get those cows fed!

Here are a few tips to keep you comfortable working on the farm!

Lifting: Lift with your legs and keep the load close to your body. It is never a good idea to reach and lift at the same time, so whatever you need to pick up should be close to you.

Carrying: Unless you are carrying two items equal in weight, things can be awkward and uncomfortable. If you can, instead of carrying one full bucket of feed try pouring half into another bucket so the weight is distributed evenly. If the inconvenience outweighs that solution then counterbalance the weight by raising your other arm while carrying the full bucket.

Shoveling: Whether it’s manure, grain, or something else the theory is the same. Keep your feet shoulder length apart with your knees slightly bent and lift with your legs, not your back.

Driving: Sit with your back against the seat and make sure you are close enough to the steering wheel that your knees are slightly bent. To prevent your muscles from tightening on long trips, shift often.

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Safety in the show ring

livestock safety 0Kansas State University Research and Extension developed a program to teach youth how to handle their show animals safely and without injury. The extensive program allows you to choose from six different animal categories. After selecting a category the user can choose to view the lesson plan loaded with information, take a quiz, or watch a few videos. This would be a great tool for parents and 4-H leaders to use while preparing their kids for county and state fairs.Livestock safety 2

Click here to check out the impressive program.

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Back to school they go

The Next Generation: Farm Safety and Health

New supplies – Check.   New clothes – Check.  New safety habits – Check.

A new school year brings a new routine filled with early morning bus rides, afterschool activities, and homework for days! Why not make sure your family gets through it safely. Make safety a habit this coming school year and commit to keeping your family free from danger. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Obey all traffic laws to and from school
  • Post emergency contact numbers on the fridge
  • Create evacuation plans for a house fire or other emergency
  • Re-stock your first aid kits
  • Have the kids memorize important numbers instead of relying on cell phone contacts
  • Never leave the house with a candle burning

Fun Safety books at HBC

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Are zero turn mowers a deathtrap waiting to happen?

Melvin Myers, a professor at Emory University, recently wrote an editorial about the importance of ROPS on zero turn mowers. In the article he argued that without ROPS this kind of mower is likely to become a deathtrap for it’s riders because of the way it is built.

Zero turn mowers function by the two steering arms that sit right above the riders lap. The arms can be pushed forward, moving the mower forward and when pulled back, the machine goes into reverse. When the arms are moved in the opposite direction the mower makes a zero degree turn.

With the arms located above the operator’s lap, they can act as a restraint, somewhat like a seat belt. In the absence of ROPS it is recommended that tractor operators don’t use restraint devices such as seat belts, to allow them to eject from the seat if the tractor is overturned. Myers argues that the same should be true on the zero turn mowers. If restraint devices are in place, then ROPS should be used. The only difference is that zero turn mowers, because of the way the steering arms operate, will always come with driver restraint. So in theory, the machine should also come with ROPS to protect the driver who cannot physically escape if an overturn should happen. The steering arms would simply not allow it. What do you think? Are zero turn mowers without ROPS just a deathtrap after all?

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Think About it! #TractorSafety


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