Despite your best-laid plans, accidents may (and often do) occur on the family farm. A resulting injury can be debilitating, preventing the injured among you from contributing to the work. Even small injuries can delay, or cripple your ability to accomplish the goals you’ve set.
We all hope to nip hazards in the bud before they escalate to an accident. Below are three ways you can enhance safety for everyone on the farm.
1. Educate. Keep in mind that what you consider “common sense” may not be common among your children or hired hands. Before assuming any of them can perform a task, be sure to talk about it. This may include proper operation of equipment, safe routes through hazardous areas, or smart behavior near livestock. In any case, make your expectations clear, and give them a chance to voice questions and concerns.
2. Collaborate. Safety is a team effort. Encourage your farm hands to take part in identifying hazards. Make a list of things that can be improved, and open the discussion to ideas from the group. Don’t forget to add your two cents! As you make suggestions, imparting wisdom from years of experience, you will help create a culture of safety.
3. Reiterate. Beware of complacency. A one-time commitment to preventing accidents and injury is not enough to safeguard against them. Resist the temptation to become relaxed in your daily routine. You may consider posting the list you have made in clear sight. Remind yourself, and your work force, that taking shortcuts, omitting safety procedures, and becoming distracted can cause the dreaded accident you’ve worked hard to avoid.
Though getting hurt at work is an accident, safety most certainly is not. It may take some practice, but implementing the list above will protect the entire family, and ensure safe success on the family farm.
For more information on accidents and injury, contact us.