RICHMOND—–There are many dangerous occupations, and farming is among the most hazardous.
A recent report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics found that agricultural activities like logging, fishing and farming are among the 34 deadliest jobs in the U.S. To encourage safe farming practices, Virginia Farm Bureau Federation will promote agriculture and rural safety and health as part of the 2020 Ag Safety Awareness Week, March 1-7.
This year’s theme is “20:20 Vision on Ag Safety,” which aims to reduce the number of work-related injuries and deaths on farms by promoting safe practices and increasing public awareness.
Each March, the American Farm Bureau Federation
organizes a week to highlight farm safety. During that time, agricultural groups focus on safety in confined animal spaces, safe equipment operation and electrical safety.
“The Virginia Farm Bureau Safety Advisory Committee really is committed to trying to resolve the issues that relate to farm safety in Virginia, and [farmers’] health as well,” said Dana Fisher, VFBF senior field district services director. “We’ve got a website we hope that folks will use to find all the resources that they can.”
Eddie Reynolds Jr., a farmer in Bedford County, was killed in April 2019 when the driver of a truck attempted to pass his tractor in a no-passing zone.
“When you are driving in a rural area, you always need to be on the lookout for slow-moving vehicles,” said Janet Brooking of Drive Smart Virginia. As part of the Farm Bureau’s safety awareness campaign, drivers are encouraged to practice patience, allow time and space to pass slow-moving equipment and use proper signals.
“Investing in agricultural safety is critically important for farmers,” noted VFBF President Wayne F. Pryor. “By focusing on safety and health in our agricultural communities, we’re able to help save lives and resources through the prevention of injuries and lost time on the job.”
Media: Contact Pam Wiley
, VFBF communications, at 804-290-1128.