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Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health

Paul Ayers, John Conger, Rob Comer, Pau Troutt
Vehicle rollovers cause many agricultural work-related fatalities each year. Tractors, off-road utility vehicles (ORUVs), zero turn radius (ZTR) mowers, and all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) can all become involved in fatal rollovers. The rollover tendency of these vehicles was evaluated using static lateral and longitudinal stability angles. Center of gravity locations were measured with the lift axle method, and lateral and longitudinal stability angles were calculated for four ATVs, five ORUVs, four ZTR mowers, and four lawn tractors...
July 31, 2018: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Megin Nichols, Lauren Stevenson, Laura Whitlock, Kristy Pabilonia, Misha Robyn, Colin Basler, Tom Gomez
The number of outbreaks of Salmonella infections linked to live poultry contact increased from 1990 to 2016. In 2016, the number of human illnesses linked to live poultry was the highest reported, with more than 900 cases, including 209 hospitalizations and three deaths. Live poultry harboring Salmonella typically appear healthy but can intermittently shed bacteria in their droppings, contaminating their feathers, beaks, and the areas where they live and roam. Thus, both direct contact with poultry and indirect contact with anything in areas where animals live and roam can result in human Salmonella infection...
July 31, 2018: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Roberto Romaniello, Antonia Tamborrino, Alessandro Leone
The use of mobile elevated work platforms (MEWPs) versus ladders was studied to evaluate the physical activity (PA) of workers and their performance during olive tree pruning. Accelerometers worn by the workers were used to measure triaxial accelerations, which were converted into PA using Freedson's equation. The mean values of acceleration on the three axes for workers on ladders led to statistically higher results than for workers on MEWPs. The energy expenditure (EE) and metabolic equivalent (MET) values were statistically different (about 1...
July 31, 2018: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Yang Geng, S Dee Jepsen
Hazards associated with grain storage facilities are a contributing factor to agricultural injuries and are a perpetual problem for Ohio farmers, especially as on-farm grain storage facilities continue to grow in popularity with producers. To establish effective injury prevention programs, safety professionals must first understand how the industry operates, the culture of the workers, and the current practices used to avoid injuries. This research project was designed to bridge the gap between what is currently known about the hazards that exist on Ohio's farms, specifically how safety and health information is incorporated at the grain handling and storage facilities...
July 31, 2018: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Salah F Issa, Carl Wassgren, Charles V Schwab
Grain entrapments remain a major concern in the grain industry, with 1,100 incidents documented since the 1970s. One particular concern is the ability of a victim to breathe while entrapped in grain. Anecdotal reports suggest that victims struggle to breathe when entrapped in grain to a depth that covers their chests, yet some evidence indicates that victims should be able to breathe normally as long as their airways are not blocked regardless of depth. The hypothesis for this discrepancy is that previously published experiments measured an active stress state in the grain, while a person breathing also experiences a passive stress state during inhalation...
July 31, 2018: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Ashley M Bush, Susan Westneat, Steven R Browning, Jennifer Swanberg
Occupational illnesses are inadequately reported for agriculture, an industry dominated by a vulnerable Hispanic population and high fatal and nonfatal injury rates. Work-related illnesses can contribute to missed work, caused by a combination of personal and work factors, with costs to the individual, employer, and society. To better understand agricultural occupational illnesses, 225 Hispanic horse workers were interviewed via community-based convenience sampling. Descriptive statistics, bivariate analyses, and log binomial regression modeling were used to: (1) describe the prevalence of missed work due to work-related illnesses among Hispanic horse workers, (2) examine work-related and personal factors associated with missed work, and (3) identify health symptoms and work-related characteristics potentially associated with missed work...
May 7, 2018: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Yuan-Hsin Cheng, William E Field, Salah F Issa, Kevin Kelley, Matthew Heber, Robert Turner
Since 1978, the Purdue University Agricultural Safety and Health Program has managed a surveillance effort and database to collect information on documented injuries and fatalities in all forms of U.S. agricultural confined spaces. The database currently contains 1,968 cases documented in the U.S. between 1964 and 2016. Of these cases, 174 (8.8%) involved entrapment or suffocation in grain transport vehicles (GTVs), including gravity-flow wagons, semi-truck trailers, and other agricultural transport vehicles that have limited access and are not considered normal work spaces or are classified as confined spaces...
May 7, 2018: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Salah F Issa, Mahmoud M Nour, William E Field
No previous studies have been found that document the level of use or validate the effectiveness of safety harnesses and lifelines in the prevention of or extrication from grain entrapments or engulfments. This article addresses that void via analysis of the data contained in the Purdue Agricultural Confined Space Incident Database. A total of 1,147 cases involving entrapments or engulfments in grain masses were mined for terms that might indicate the use of a safety harness, lifeline, fall restraint system, rope, or outside observer...
May 7, 2018: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Emma B Garrison, Jonathan Dropkin, Rebecca Russell, Paul Jenkins
Agricultural workers perform tasks that frequently require awkward and extreme postures that are associated with musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). The PATH (Posture, Activity, Tools, Handling) system currently provides a sound methodology for quantifying workers' exposure to these awkward postures on an ordinal scale of measurement, which places restrictions on the choice of analytic methods. This study reports a modification of the PATH methodology that instead captures these postures as degrees of flexion, an interval-scaled measurement...
January 29, 2018: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Aadesh K Rakhra, Danny D Mann
If a user-centered approach is not used to design information displays, the quantity and quality of information presented to the user may not match the needs of the user, or it may exceed the capability of the human operator for processing and using that information. The result may be an excessive mental workload and reduced situation awareness of the operator, which can negatively affect the machine performance and operational outcomes. The increasing use of technology in agricultural machines may expose the human operator to excessive and undesirable information if the operator's information needs and information processing capabilities are ignored...
January 29, 2018: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Marco Bordignon, Maurizio Cutini, Carlo Bisaglia, Paolo Taboga, Francesco Marcolin
Professional drivers have been found to be at a high risk of developing low back pain due to prolonged sitting and vehicle vibration. In a previous survey carried out on 1,155 tractor drivers, tractor vibration and/or incorrect posture while driving were found to cause low back disorders in more than 80% of the interviewed drivers. In this context, the present research introduces a new evaluation protocol to assess the ergonomic characteristics of agricultural tractor seats through the use of pressure sensors, taking into account both static and dynamic conditions...
January 29, 2018: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Nathan M Jones, Erika E Scott, Nicole Krupa, Paul L Jenkins
This article provides an estimate for the economic costs of agricultural injuries sustained in the states of Maine and New Hampshire between the years 2008 and 2010. The authors used a novel dataset of 562 agriculturally related occupational injuries, and cost estimates were generated using the CDC's Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting System (WISQARS). Individual cases from the dataset that did not match the query options for WISQARS were excluded. Of the 562 agricultural injuries identified in the dataset, 361 met the WISQARS criteria...
January 29, 2018: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Charles V Schwab, Isaac J Rempe
Power take-off (PTO) is a common method of transferring power from a tractor to a towed piece of machinery. The PTO is also a well-documented cause of severe and often permanent disabling injuries to farm operators. The physical conditions that cause entanglements are not well established. Several studies have explored the parameters of PTO entanglements as materials have been drawn across a rotating PTO knuckle to test for entanglement probability. The objective of this study was to determine probability of entanglement when materials are dropped vertically onto a PTO knuckle spinning at 540 rpm...
November 20, 2017: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Jessica M Beswick-Honn, Thomas M Peters, T Renée Anthony
Direct-reading gas monitors warn workers of the risk of potentially fatal hydrogen sulfide (H2S) exposures that may arise during manure handling. Low-cost, low-maintenance H2S monitors are available from many manufacturers, but differences in their features and performance make selection challenging for farmers. Moreover, little information is available on the practical maintenance and performance of these devices in agricultural environments. The objective of this study was to provide information to agricultural workers to aid in the selection, maintenance, and use of low-cost H2S monitors...
November 20, 2017: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
T Renée Anthony, Anthony Y Yang, Thomas M Peters
This study examined the effectiveness of engineering controls to reduce contaminant concentrations in a swine farrowing room during winter in the U.S. Midwest. Over two winters, changes in air quality were evaluated following installation of a 1700 m3 h-1 (1000 cfm) recirculating ventilation system to provide 5.4 air exchanges per hour. This system incorporated one of two readily available dust control systems, one based on filtration and the other on cyclonic treatment. A second treatment evaluated reductions in carbon dioxide (CO2) associated with replacement of standard, unvented gas-fired heaters with new vented heaters, installed between the two winter test periods...
November 20, 2017: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Sandy Mehlhorn, Barbara Darroch, Staci Williams Jackson
A program was developed to educate young drivers about laws and guidelines governing farm equipment on public roadways in Tennessee. The goal of the program was to make young drivers aware of their responsibilities and the responsibilities of farm equipment drivers when sharing public roadways. A presentation was developed outlining the topics and was accompanied by identical pre- and post-surveys. The material was presented to drivers' education classes and agriculture science classes at several high schools in west and middle Tennessee...
November 20, 2017: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Charles V Schwab, Gretchen A Mosher, Saxon J Ryan
Keeping workers safe is a continuing challenge in agricultural production. Risk assessment methodologies have been used widely in other industries to better understand systems and enhance decision making, yet their use in production agriculture has been limited. This article describes the considerations and the approach taken to measure the difference in worker injury risks between two agricultural production systems. A model was developed specifically for the comparison of worker injury risk between corn and biofuel switchgrass production systems...
July 31, 2017: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Sai K Ramaswamy, Gretchen A Mosher
Workplace injuries in the grain handling industry are common, yet little research has characterized worker injuries in grain elevators across all hazard types. Learning from past injuries is essential for preventing future occurrences, but the lack of injury information for the grain handling industry hinders this effort. The present study addresses this knowledge gap by using data from over 7000 workers' compensation claims reported from 2008 to 2016 by commercial grain handling facilities in the U.S. to characterize injury costs and severity...
July 31, 2017: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Shawn G Ehlers, William E Field
This study concerned the ability of operators of tractors and other self-propelled agricultural machinery to visually recognize objects and/or hazards within close proximity to the rear of those machines and/or any implements in tow, especially when backing up. It was hypothesized that the data collected would identify the factors affecting rearward visibility and help determine the effectiveness of two backup-assisting devices (i.e., mirrors and camera systems) in enhancing the operator's ability to observe objects or hazards...
July 31, 2017: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
Charles V Schwab
Calculation of the extraction force for a grain entrapment victim requires a coefficient of friction between the grain and the surface of the victim. Because denim is a common fabric for the work clothes that cover entrapment victims, the coefficient of friction between grain and denim becomes necessary. The purpose of this research was to calculate the apparent coefficient of friction of wheat on denim fabric using a proven procedure. The expectation is to improve the current understanding of conditions that influence extraction forces for victims buried in wheat...
July 31, 2017: Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
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