Written By: Leah Chester-Davis
Farm Safety Days at Agricultural Research Stations
“We’ve had tragedies in our communities or hear of them elsewhere,” says Stacey Barker, Carolina Farm Credit loan officer in the Sparta Branch. Like each of the farmers – Corey Lutz, Lewis Phipps, Sampson Parker – in our farm safety series emphasized, Stacey says it’s often the simple stuff you don’t even think about. She urges farmers to take advantage of Farm Safety Days at one of the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Research Stations across the state.
She cites the one at Laurel Springs, which is held every one to two years. Check with your nearest Research Station.
Carolina Farm Credit and Cooperative Extension-sponsored Farm Safety Seminars
“Sometimes it’s a reality check to come and talk to somebody who has been through a farm accident,” says Carrie Barnhardt, Carolina Farm Credit loan officer in the Concord Branch. Carrie hopes that both the public and farmers will attend a Farm Safety Seminar on Oct. 24, which is sponsored by both the Concord and Salisbury Branches of Carolina Farm Credit and the Rowan County Extension Center. The seminar will feature Sampson Parker as guest speaker. Parker survived what many cite as one of the most epic accounts in the annals of survival history and was one of the Top 10 national news stories in 2007. The seminar also will include information from the N.C. Agromedicine Institute and numerous farm safety tips and door prizes.
Oct. 24, 6 p.m. at the Rowan County Extension Center, 2727 Old Concord Road, Salisbury; includes dinner and speakers. Seating is limited so call early! Reserve your space by Oct. 11 by calling the Carolina Farm Credit, Concord Branch, at 704.786.0193.
eXtension, N.C. Agromedicine Institute, N.C. Department of Labor Provide Resources
“It’s a challenging time to be a farmer,” says Ben Cabaniss, Carolina Farm Credit loan officer in the Lincolnton Branch. He cites numerous stories, in addition to the ones we’ve shared, about farmers being injured. “Often it happens when people are under stress and it can happen quickly,” he says as he echoes what farmers who’ve been in accidents experienced and the advice they offer. “Stay calm and try not to move so quickly. Step back and take time before getting in a bad situation.”
Cabaniss shares info on other helpful resources:
eXtension offers an Ag Safety and Health section. Because Cabaniss knows a farmer who recently risked electrocution when he drove a sprayer under a power line, he shares the link to “Overhead Power-Line Safety” on the farm.
The N.C. Agromedicine Institute is a partnership with East Carolina University, N.C. State University, and N.C. A&T State University; it’s the only program of its kind in North Carolina and the Mid-Atlantic region.
Its goal is to reduce injury and illness. The focus is on the people, including their physical, emotional and spiritual well-being. The Institute conducts research that leads to practical solutions and it offers educational programs across the state. It works directly with individuals or groups who may be employed by or related to farming, fishing or forestry industries.
The N.C. Department of Labor has several agricultural safety publications and videos on its website, including ones on heat stress, forklift safety, and anaphylactic shock due to insect bites or stings or other allergic reactions.
In this Farm Safety series, farmers Corey Lutz, Lincoln County, Sampson Parker, Cabarrus County, and Lewis Phipps, Alleghany County, also share their stories of farm accidents and survival.