SDFU Farm Safety Trailer Brings Hands-On Safety Education to Your Community

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For decades, South Dakota Farmers Union has brought farm safety education to hundreds of rural youth through county camps held each summer.

 This year, the grassroots organization is taking the message of farm safety on the road - literally.

 The SDFU Farm Safety Trailer is a portable, hands-on classroom dedicated educating rural youth across South Dakota.

 "Education is one of our organization's three focuses. The hands-on nature of this trailer will enhance this mission and allow us to provide farm safety education to youth year-round," explains Karla Hofhenke, SDFU Executive Director.

 Tracy Chase agrees. Chase teaches science and co-teaches agriculture education at McCook Central High School. "When learning is hands-on, it engages students' thought processes so they understand what they are learning," explains Chase, who was honored by Farmers Union in 2016 for her involvement in SDFU county camps, with the Minnie Lovenger Award.

 Chase says farm safety is a very real concern. "A farm safety accident had a large impact on our community this last year when a senior rolled his ATV and sustained a severe concussion that kept him from playing sports. Accidents touch close to home. Everyone needs reminders - youth and adults."

 Preventing accidents through fun and interaction is the No. 1 goal of the SDFU Farm Safety Trailer, explains Rocky Forman, SDFU Member Services Coordinator.

"We are eager to partner with schools, 4-H clubs and FFA chapters and other organizations to bring our safety trailer to rural communities so South Dakota youth receive farm safety education that we hope prevents accidents and worse," Forman explains.

 Complete with an ATV simulator, grain bin safety, PTO safety and more, the trailer was designed by the SDFU team based on research and creatively addressing common safety concerns. "The trailer took more than a year to design and develop, but the result is worth it," Hofhenke says.

 To see the SDFU Farm Safety Trailer for yourself, check it out during the 2018 South Dakota State Fair held in Huron Aug. 30 through Sept. 3. To bring the SDFU Farm Safety Trailer to your community, contact Forman at 605-350-3421 or

Tucker Micheel of Cavour, learns about ATV safety with help from an ATV simulator and Rocky Forman, SDFU Member Services Coordinator. The ATV safety simulator is one of the many hands-on safety exhibits featured in the South Dakota Farmers Union

Farm Safety Trailer,  a portable, classroom dedicated to educating rural youth across South Dakota.

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