Agriculture Safety

Keep Safe and Keep on Farming

Cutting corners when it comes to safety on your farm can end up causing larger problems in the long run, especially when you’re working around natural gas and electricity. Try implementing these simple tips and tricks to maximize efficiency and keep your farm safe year-round.

5 Ways to Dig Safely

  1. Contact MISS DIG811 by calling 8-1-1 or by going to www.missdig.org at least three full working days before you dig. They will arrange to have underground power lines and other utilities marked so you can dig a safe distance away.
  2. Make sure your excavation site is clearly described on your staking request. White lining or staking the dig site can help.
  3. Wait for utilities to be marked and check Positive Response before digging.
  4. Respect the marks, hand-expose to verify location, and dig with care.
  5. Any time you make contact with an underground utility, call us immediately.

Farm Safety: If any of your farming activities include deep plowing, fence post installation, trenching, leveling, installing drain tile, subsoiling or other excavation work, it’s vital to call 8-1-1 three working days before starting any digging. A representative will mark underground lines at no cost.

5 Ways to Stay Safe Around Overhead Electrical Lines

  1. Survey your job site every day to locate overhead power lines, poles and guy wires, and point them out to co-workers. Be alert for lines hidden by trees and buildings.
  2. Review your emergency plan before work begins, so everyone knows what to do in case of power line contact.
  3. Michigan safety standards require anyone working near power lines to stay at least 10 feet away, including any tools or equipment you are using. Metal ladders, cranes and some other specialized equipment require 20 feet of clearance.
  4. Higher voltages may require greater distances, contact MIOSHA for specific requirements. Also, contact us at 800-477-5050 to verify voltages, if needed.
  5. Clearly mark boundaries with tape, signs, or barricades to keep workers and equipment the required distance away.

9 Habits to Increase Safety Around the Farm

  1. Make preventive maintenance on your electrical system  a priority.
  2. Protect your equipment from dust, dirt and moisture by keeping covers on and closed.
  3. Visually inspect your equipment on a regular basis, looking for signs of wear, corrosion, overheating, and physical damage.
  4. Install equipment that is listed for environmental use.
  5. Use the proper wire size and type.
  6. Eliminate extension cords and other unprotected cords and cables, if possible.
  7. Balance your loads (avoid overloading).
  8. Follow local electrical codes.
  9. Have a qualified person test and inspect your electrical equipment on a regular basis.