Work hazard control efforts by Wisconsin dairy farmers.
Chapman-LJ; Schuler-RT; Wilkinson-TL; Skjolaas-CA
J Agric Saf Health 1996 May; 2(2):7-13
A survey of farmer perspectives on work hazards and their efforts to control and prevent these hazards was conducted. The study group consisted of 401 Wisconsin dairy farmers who responded to questionnaires on safety hazards on their farms, precautions taken during work, use of agricultural extension office (AEO) safety and health programs, and recommendations for reducing farm related injuries. A total of 268 usable responses were returned. The mean size of their herds was 95.2 animals, which was larger than the mean size of all Wisconsin dairy farms, 51.8 animals. Most (82%) of the subjects conducted hazard inspections at their farms at least annually and 80% indicated that they would use a standardized checklist if it was provided. Approximately 63% were not willing to pay for an outside nonpunitive safety inspection and only 54% were willing to budget any money annually for dealing with safety hazards. Most (75%) of the respondents felt that learning how to work safely around hazards was more important than correcting the hazards. The subjects were aware of the potential hazards presented by tractors, particularly when allowing extra riders, and 62% prohibited extra riders. Most (71%) reported wearing seat belts when driving vehicles on public highways. Barriers cited by the farmers to using AEO agents to improve farm safety included too many demands on agent time and not being interested in attending safety programs. Most farmers had no contact with an AEO agent or program during the previous year. The authors conclude that most dairy farmers agree that safety is important and a majority are willing to budget money for safety. Although most have no interest in AEO programs, AEO agents are in a strong position to assist farmers in safety inspections.
NIOSH-Cooperative-Agreement; Occupational-hazards; Agricultural-workers; Questionnaires; Worker-motivation; Safety-practices; Accident-prevention; Control-methods;
Author Keywords: Farming; Injury control; Occupational health; Rural health; Rural populations
Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health
University of Wisconsin, Madison