Farm Safety Trailer Provides Hands-On Safety Reminder
Each year, lives are changed forever when South Dakotans are injured or lose their lives to farm or ranch accidents.
Farmers Union invests in education to keep youth and families safe on farms and ranches. The grassroots agriculture organization recently designed a decked-out Farm Safety Trailer to help.
Complete with an ATV simulator, grain bin harness, interactive games and a toy-size farm, the Farm Safety Trailer is a portable reminder of safety practices.
“Verbal reminders only go so far,” says Karla Hofhenke, Executive Director of S.D. Farmers Union. “As most parents and teachers will attest, hands-on learning is one of the most effective ways to teach. That’s why this trailer was custom designed to actively engage all senses, learning styles and ages.”
The Farm Safety Trailer is among many tools S.D. Farmers Union has used to spread the safety message. Each summer more than 3,000 youth attend Farmers Union day camps where farm safety is taught. During the annual State FFA Convention and South Dakota State Fair, Farmers Union hosts a Team Up for Safety quiz bowl geared to remind teens of safe practices when on farms, ranches or working around large equipment.
“As a grassroots organization committed to supporting South Dakota’s family farmers and ranchers, safety of rural youth and their families is top of mind,” says Doug Sombke, President of S.D. Farmers Union. “If this trailer prevents one accident or loss, it will be well worth the investment.”
Farm Safety Facts
- According to the 2013 US Bureau of Labor Statistics report, the combined occupations of agriculture, forestry and fishing has the highest rate of occupational deaths with 480 farm work-related deaths annually.
- Each year, 115 children ages 0-19 are killed with 4 of 5 of them being present in the workplace, but not working.
- Tractor accidents are the leading cause of death at around 125 annually. Other deaths involve livestock, falls and suffocation from grain or gases.
- Every day, roughly 167 agricultural workers suffer a lost-work-time injury. Five percent of these injuries result in permanent impairment.
- The mean cost of a tractor overturn is $1 million.
- Every $1 invested in ROPS installation yields $3.75 in investment return
- The annual cost of occupational agricultural injuries is $8.3 billion with the mean cost of a single tractor overturn accident being $1 million.