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Child bystanding: a risk factor for injury and identifying its' determinants on midwestern agricultural operations.

Williams QL; Alexander BH; Gerberich SG; Nachreiner NM; Church TR; Ryan A
Accid Anal Prev 2010 Jan; 42(1):10-18
BACKGROUND: Agriculture is considered among the most dangerous occupations and has consistently ranked among the top three. Production processes, associated with this occupation, place at risk not only workers but also others who live on the operations. We evaluated the incidence and determinants of associated bystander injuries in the Regional Rural Injury Study-II (RRIS-II). METHODS: The RRIS-II followed 32,601 people ( approximately 85% of eligible) from rural communities in the Midwest for 1999 and 2001, using six-month recall periods, and identified their injury events. Demographic, injury, and exposure data were collected through comprehensive and case-control computer-assisted telephone interviews. Multivariate logistic regression analyses were used to estimate the risk of child bystanding and agricultural injury, while controlling for potentially confounding variables. RESULTS: Nearly 60% of all 425-child injury cases (<20 years) responded to sometimes/frequently bystanding in six out of seven different agricultural environments (e.g., workshops, animal areas, etc.) Multivariate regression analyses, with odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals, showed increased odds of injury for bystanding near used (1.5; 1.1, 1.9) or stored (1.4; 1.1, 1.8) machinery, and near fields and barnyards (1.4; 1.0, 1.9). Further, multivariate analyses revealed increased odds of bystanding for parental beliefs, such as: child age (1.4; 1.0, 2.0) near stored equipment. Parental levels of strictness were also evaluated and showed decreased odds of bystanding when the parents were not strict about the child's wearing a seatbelt near used equipment (0.5; 0.3, 1.0). Households with only one child had decreased odds of bystanding for five of the exposures while there was an increased odds of bystanding near animals for households with five or more children. CONCLUSIONS: Although parents cannot child-proof their operations, it is important for them to understand the apparent odds of and risks associated with bystanding. Children can have injury odds similar to adults in this environment; therefore, it is necessary to examine parental factors that may be associated with children's likelihood of bystanding in high-risk work environments.
Accident-prevention; Accidents; Age-factors; Agricultural-industry; Agricultural-workers; Agriculture; Behavior-patterns; Children; Education; Epidemiology; Farmers; Injuries; Injury-prevention; Occupational-hazards; Risk-analysis; Risk-factors; Safety-measures; Safety-practices; Statistical-analysis; Training; Work-environment; Author Keywords: Child bystander; Agricultural bystander; Child injury
Quintin L. Williams, University of Illinois at Chicago, Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, School of Public Health (MC 922), 2121 West Taylor Street, Chicago, IL 60612-7260
Publication Date
Document Type
Journal Article
Email Address
Funding Amount
Funding Type
Fiscal Year
Identifying No.
Grant-Number-R01-CCR-514375; Grant-Number-R01-OH-004270; Grant-Number-T42-OH-008434
Issue of Publication
Priority Area
Work Environment and Workforce: Special Populations
Source Name
Accident Analysis and Prevention
Performing Organization
University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division