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Reap What You Sow: Stay Safe During Planting Season - Blog

 

Reap What you Sow: Stay Safe During Planting Season

This article was taken directly from the Kansas Country Living magazine - April 2019 Edition

Farmers face long hours and fatigue during the lengthy planting season. If you farm, take care of yourself by getting as much rest as possible and allowing yourself breaks to clear your head. Be especially aware of electrical hazards around the farm. Be cautious and think twice before acting around electricity. Safe Electricity offers farmers the following reminders:

  • If your machinery or vehicle (tractor, truck or otherwise) comes in contact with a power line, do not get out. Once contact has been made with a live line, you are now a pathway to ground and you could get electrocuted if you step out. Instead, stay where you are and call 911 to dispatch the appropriate utility to de-energize the power.
  • If you come across an accident or incident near a downed power line, from a distance alert individuals to stay in the tractor or vehicle as long as there is no imminent danger. Do not approach the scene.
  • When using machinery with long extensions or tall antennas and when using ladders, look up to avoid contact with overhead power lines.
  • An electrical current can jump or arc even without making contact so keep equipment at least 10 feet from surrounding power lines at all times.
  • Remember, non-metallic materials such as tree limbs, ropes and hay can conduct electricity, depending on dampness and dust/dirt accumulation.
  • Visually inspect overhead lines. If a wire is hanging low or is on the ground, consider it energized and stay at least 50 feet away; call 911 to have the operator dispatch the utility.
  • Every day, map out where equipment will be moved to ensure it will clear power lines.
  • When working in the vicinity of power lines, always use a spotter who has a broad vantage point.
  • Train anyone working with or for you, including seasonal employees, to be aware of power line locations and teach them proper clearance distance. Design and implement a safety training program that includes a review of electrical hazards and how to safely deal with power lines.
  • According to American Family Insurance, "know your PTO." To stay safe when working with a power take off (PTO), always disengage the PTO, turn off the engine and remove keys before getting off the tractor. Never step across a rotating power shaft.

For more information on electrical safety, go to SafeElectricity.org.

 

This article was taken directly from the Kansas Country Living magazine - April 2019 Edition

 

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