Farm Safety Focus NOVEMBER 2018 www.irishfarmersmonthly.com ways to keep the kids safe on the farm this winter AXA offers some helpful tips on how to keep children safe on the farm As the cold weather sets in and the days get shorter, it’s a great time to sit down with the family and discuss how everyone can stay safe on the farm. While kids who have grown up on the farm know how to stay safe, the school breaks and after-school fun means there’s more kids around who aren’t familiar with what’s safe and what’s not. Refresh everyone’s mind to make sure everyone has fun on the farm this winter. „ „ Give them a high-vis vest or other reflective gear. Make sure extra layers are tucked in and jackets are zipped up with no hanging strings so they don’t get snagged or entangled in machinery. Let them help safely „ Of course the kids want to help out around the farm and it’s fun to let them, but just make sure their jobs are age-appropriate and the kids are always supervised. Talk to them „ Remind them that while there’s lots of space to play, there are some areas that are off limits, no matter what. Farms are not playgrounds and educating your kids about the areas that are off limits will help keep them and their friends safe. „ Get to know the animals Kids love to be around the animals and while they aren’t ferocious, they could be unpredictable and dangerous if a child is in the wrong place at the wrong time. When moving cattle, make sure the children are standing away from gateways. Remind the kids that a cow who is trying to protect her babies could get scared and try to attack. Even if an animal isn’t trying to hurt someone, just their size can hurt them if they’re in the way. Take a walk „ If the kids have someone over to play, take a walk with them around the farm and point out the dangers, showing them the places they’re allowed to play. Point out the warning signs and barriers. Show them where water and slurry are stored. Remind them that all machines are off-limits. „ „ „ „ „ 44 Dress them right „ Make sure the kids are dressed properly for the cold weather, with extra layers to keep them warm. Secure everything „ Slurry pits and lagoons should be safely secured and children should never be in the yard during slurry agitation or spreading.