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'Every farmer counts' during National Farm Safety and Health Week

The week promotes and recognizes the importance of farmer safety and health, including making safe decisions and using caution while in the field this harvest season

Posted: Sep 25, 2020 3:26 AM

MASON CITY, Iowa - Each year, harvest is typically a busy, and dangerous, time. 2018 data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that the agricultural sector is still the most dangerous in the country, with 574 fatalities being reported, or about 23.4 deaths per 100,000 workers.

Using the theme 'Every Farmer Counts', this year's National Farm Safety and Health Week is focusing on acknowledging, celebrating and uplifting our country's farmers and ranchers who have had to deal with many challenges over the last few years, from extreme weather to economic changes, as well as promoting safe and healthy practices on farms and ranches this harvest season. Topics being discussed this week include rural road safety, child safety on the farm, emergency preparedness, and safety and health for women in agriculture.

Dr. Charles Schwab is a professor at Iowa State University, and conducts research projects on agricultural and safety issues. The challenges of 2020, from the pandemic and economic uncertainty, to wild weather, may be stressful and taxing on farmers this season. That stress, he says, could lead to serious error, including an accident.

"What we find is when the person is stressed, things change some of the ability to respond, observation techniques, things to keep you safe can be diminished."

To stay in optimal working condition, Schwab emphasizes monitoring your body's signals and stay hydrated and properly nourished, as well as staying alert of your personal health.

"When you ignore those signals, that's when you start to have diminished qualities of your awareness, your observational power might be reduced, your attention span has changed, and your critical thinking skills are diminshed. When that happens, you have a higher potential to be injured, and that's what we're trying to avoid this time of year."

Another major topic being discussed this week is tractor safety. According to Schwab, the number one cause of agricultural-related deaths involve farmers using older tractors without rollover protective structures, or ROPS. He advises farmers, even those who have plenty of experience, to think about using technology with these features in place, whether through using a new tractor or retrofitting an older one.

"It's not about not having the experience, it's not about the individual not doing some things right or wrong. It's about making the choice of using one with ROPS and using one without ROPS. It's almost that simple."

For those who are needing help, we have some resources listed below:

*Iowa Concern (1-800-447-1985)

*National ROPS Rebate Program

*Guide for available ROPS

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 276500

Reported Deaths: 3321
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin590031089
Ramsey24988472
Anoka19724213
Dakota19215176
Washington12538106
Stearns1226689
Scott753854
St. Louis740897
Wright663436
Olmsted610130
Sherburne512539
Clay445155
Carver409712
Blue Earth373511
Rice361431
Kandiyohi348215
Crow Wing316130
Nobles296028
Chisago28398
Otter Tail266615
Benton261940
Winona246128
Mower236722
Polk228621
Douglas219829
Morrison211621
Lyon193711
McLeod18879
Beltrami184615
Goodhue177626
Becker17559
Itasca168924
Steele16756
Todd165312
Isanti165015
Carlton153610
Nicollet146523
Freeborn13935
Mille Lacs132830
Le Sueur13219
Waseca129710
Cass12018
Pine11926
Brown117510
Meeker10797
Roseau9923
Martin98220
Hubbard97022
Wabasha9121
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Chippewa7697
Sibley7094
Renville70818
Cottonwood7060
Wadena7006
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Pipestone67018
Rock6439
Houston6152
Fillmore6050
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Murray5283
Swift4976
Pope4820
Faribault4750
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Marshall4277
Jackson4091
Lake3584
Unassigned34356
Koochiching3325
Wilkin3275
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Lincoln3141
Norman3096
Big Stone2771
Mahnomen2494
Grant2346
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Traverse1330
Lake of the Woods871
Cook580

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 213603

Reported Deaths: 2193
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk31707324
Linn13442161
Scott1040375
Black Hawk10393127
Woodbury9932114
Johnson911635
Dubuque879290
Story647619
Dallas602856
Pottawattamie585166
Sioux351925
Webster335930
Marshall332942
Cerro Gordo326541
Clinton307737
Buena Vista291114
Muscatine270366
Des Moines270116
Plymouth259537
Warren258510
Wapello242871
Jones222212
Jasper206639
Marion194418
Carroll190920
Lee190315
Bremer182612
Henry17087
Crawford170615
Benton160315
Tama146340
Jackson13758
Delaware136221
Washington131313
Boone128811
Dickinson127510
Mahaska121327
Wright11625
Buchanan11009
Page10834
Hardin107510
Clay10624
Clayton10234
Harrison102328
Hamilton10157
Cedar101413
Calhoun10047
Mills9886
Fayette9768
Floyd96914
Lyon9668
Kossuth9464
Poweshiek93712
Butler9134
Winneshiek90310
Iowa88011
Winnebago87523
Louisa81316
Hancock8067
Grundy79710
Chickasaw7893
Sac7817
Cherokee7624
Cass75419
Appanoose7426
Shelby7265
Allamakee72411
Mitchell7184
Union7096
Guthrie70815
Emmet70623
Franklin68419
Humboldt6645
Madison6474
Jefferson6351
Palo Alto6064
Unassigned5950
Keokuk5397
Pocahontas5192
Howard5069
Greene4980
Osceola4941
Clarke4614
Davis4405
Ida43910
Montgomery43210
Taylor4312
Monroe42912
Adair4157
Monona3932
Fremont3463
Van Buren3364
Worth3360
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Decatur3000
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Ringgold1892
Adams1551
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