Have a Safe Harvest Season!
The harvest season will be starting soon for our area with wheat harvest then potatoes, beets, hay and corn to come. This is an important time for our community with such a strong agriculture industry. Farmers and their extra hired help will now have two months of long hours and hard work to get in all the crops. The added stress can really wear people down and even lead to accidents if proper precautions are not followed. To avoid unnecessary injuries or illnesses, please be mindful of the following to stay safe:
Take care of yourself! Fatigue and long hours can cause people to make mistakes and lead to major injuries. It also breaks down the immune system making us more susceptible to colds and flu. Each employee should do their part to take care of themselves by packing plenty of fluids and healthy food and snack options to get through the long days. Avoid alcohol, drugs, and try to get plenty of rest each night too.
Follow the precautions and rules! There are many rules and precautions when working with heavy machinery and driving trucks that should always be followed. Employers should be sure that all employees understand these rules before working with any piece of equipment to avoid major injuries.
Take care of your back! Back injuries are always the most common injury reported by employers. All employees should be instructed on proper lifting precautions that includes using the legs when lifting heavy loads and to ask for help when needed. Employers should also help to create ergonomic work stations that help maintain good posture.
Wear your safety gear! Wear appropriate safety gear to protect yourself from the elements and dirt. Goggles or glasses will help shield your eyes from the sun and dirt. Face masks or a bandana are imperative to prevent from inhaling extra dirt in your mouth and nose. Well-fitted gloves are essential to protect your hands. Try wearing small ear buds to protect your ears and hearing, BUT be sure that you can still hear others talking to hear instructions or in case of emergencies! Lastly wear comfortable shoes and plenty of layers of clothes to adjust for warm or cold temperatures throughout the day.
We hope everyone in our community remembers to follow these health and safety precautions to have a safe and productive harvest. As your community hospital, we are here to help if you should need medical or emergency care at the hospital or our clinics to get you taken care of and back to work as soon as possible. Happy harvest to everyone!