Letterwerks Sign City
"Where Fillmore County News Comes First"
Online Edition
Friday, December 9th, 2016
Volume ∞ Issue ∞

Is your ATV a farm machine?

By Jerrold Tesmer

Fri, Sep 14th, 2012
Posted in All Agriculture

Jerrold Tesmer, Extension Educator for Fillmore/Houston Counties

A few weeks ago I started doing research on a topic for this Farm Safety Week column. What struck me was how often ATVs were included in the Agricultural Safety information. For example the bulleted points below are from a fact sheet by the American Society of Safety Engineers. As you can see, “ATV” is listed four times under Machinery Safety.

Machinery Safety

•Familiarize yourself with specific hazards associated with your machinery and ATV. Safe operating procedures are available in the owner’s manual.

•Do not carry passengers on ATVs designed for a single rider.

•Be aware of the risk of overturn when operating an ATV. Use extra caution on uneven terrain and ensure that all loads are appropriately balanced.

•Avoid wearing loose clothing or jewelry and keep hair tied back when operating machinery.

•Ensure completion of regular machine maintenance and inspection of safety guards.

•Do not make modifications to machinery not recommended by the manufacturer, including removing safety shields.

•Always wear appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE) when operating machinery, for example helmets with ATVs.

And from another source, the National Children’s Center for Rural and Agricultural Health and Safety, “Of the leading sources of fatal injuries to youth, 25 percent involved machinery, 17 percent involved motor vehicles (includes ATVs), and 16 percent were due to drowning.” “Nearly 80 percent of injured children were not actively working when the injury occurred.”

My thought when I put this together is ATVs have a work related purpose on the farm, but are often not being used for that purpose. Youth riding ATVs need training and supervision just like any other piece of equipment.

I want to end on a positive note, also from the National Children’s Center. “Over the eleven years from 1998 to 2009, the rate of childhood agricultural injuries per 1,000 farms (includes youth who live on, visit, and are hired to work on farms) declined by 57 percent (from 16.6 to 7.2). The rate of injuries per 1,000 household youth (those living on farms) declined by 60 percent (from 18.8 to 7.5) during that same period. We are making progress!

No Comments Yet. Be the first to comment!

Your comment submission is also an acknowledgement that this information may be reprinted in other formats such as the newspaper.