Proceedings of the National Institute for Farm Safety (NIFS) 2006 Annual Conference. Madison, WI: National Institute for Farm Safety, Inc., 2006 Jun; :1-19
Purpose: Farming presents increased morbidity and mortality for youth. Youth living on Hispanic operated farms pose unique challenges as Hispanic operated farms are increasing more rapidly than any other type of minority farm, showing a 51% increase between 1997 and 2002. Methods: Survey data for youth less than 20 years of age living on Hispanic operated farms in calendar years 2000 and 2003 were collected via telephone interviews. Phone calls were attempted for all farms listed on the 1997 and 2002 U.S. Department of Agriculture's Census of Agriculture sampling frames that indicated Hispanic ethnicity for the farm operator. Statistical weights were benchmarked to the USDA's Census estimates adjusted for noncoverage of farms not on the sampling frame. Error estimates were calculated using SAS SurveyMeans procedure, which incorporated the stratified sample design. Results: During the three year period, the number of youth less than 20 years of age living on Hispanic operated farms increased 59%, from an estimated 21,630 (CI95% +/- 694) in 2000 to 34,495 (+/- 1,250) in 2003. The total number of injuries increased during this time from 307 (+/- 40) to 335 (+/- 70), but the overall injury rate declined from 14.2 (+/- 1.9) per 1,000 household youth to 9.7 (+/- 2.1). The injury rate for males significantly decreased from 20.2 (+/- 3.6) to 10.7 (+/- 3.1), while the injury rate among females increased slightly from 8.2 (+/- 3.0) to 9.2 (+/- 3.7). Youth living on livestock operations comprised 62% and 65% of the injuries in 2000 and 2003, respectively. The injury rate on livestock operations decreased from 17.5 (+/- 3.7) to 11.8 (+/- 3.4), while the injury rate on crop operations dropped from 11.3 (+/- 3.7) to 8.1 (+/- 3.5). Demographic exposure data from the two survey periods for youth aged 419 years showed similar proportions of household youth reported performing work activities (49% and 52% in 2000 and 2003, respectively), riding horses (32% and 34%), driving A TVs (30% and 31 %), and operating tractors (28% and 26%). Injury rates decreased for work tasks from 14.2 (+/- 3.7) in 2000 to 8.9 (+/- 3.2) in 2003. Changes in injury rates were nonsignificant for driving A TVs [4.7 (+/- 3.3) and 3.5 (+/- 2.9) in 2000 and 2003, respectively] and horse riding [4.6 (+/- 2.9) and 5.5 (+/- 3.5)]. Females accounted for 65% and 71 % of horse riding injuries during the two time periods. In 2000, there were 22 (+/- 16) tractor-related injuries. In 2003, the estimated number of incidents that involved a tractor did not meet reporting requirements. Conclusions: Incidents related to work activities, A TVs, and horses continue to account for a significant proportion of injuries to youth on Hispanic operated farms. The injury rate for females is now similar to males. Targeted intervention and survei11ance efforts among youth living on Hispanic operated farms are necessary for exposure to horses and A TV s, for farm tractor usage, and for the changing injury patterns observed between the sexes.
National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Division of Safety Research, 1095 Willowdale Road, Morgantown, WV 26505