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Wednesday, 16 October 2013 14:43

Michigan Corn Urging Growers to Take Time Out for Safety

(AREA) -- As corn growers continue taking to their fields, Michigan Corn is reminding our farmer friends to focus not only on filling their bins, but also to follow important safety precautions that could save their lives. Harvest is one of the highest risk periods for farm injuries or fatalities. According to Michigan Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation statistics, in 2011 the highest fatality rate per 100,000 workers occurred in agriculture, with 32 percent of those deaths being individuals older than 65 years of age. There is a documented increase in agriculture-related deaths when farm equipment is in the fields.

The National Safety Council recommends farmers inspect all harvest equipment, make sure shields and guards are in place and that the seatbelt works properly, never lean or step over a power takeoff shaft while it is operating, check fire extinguishers and smoke detectors to ensure they are working properly, and keep bystanders and others away from all equipment during operation.

Motorists are urged to keep a safe distance from farm machinery as it travels down main and side roads during harvest season.