The checkoff organizations of Nebraska’s corn, soybean, wheat and sorghum industries (and their respective associations), remind farmers and agricultural workers to be safe in and around grain bins during the fifth annual “Stand Up 4 Grain Safety Week.”
“Stand Up 4 Grain Safety Week” takes place March 29 through April 2 and is organized through an alliance between the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the U.S. Department of Labor, the National Grain and Feed Association, the Grain Elevator and Processing Society and the Grain Handling Safety Council.
There are several hazards associated with grain bins, including engulfments and entanglements. An engulfment happens when grain flows downward and forms a funnel, pulling a person down to the point of full immersion. An entanglement could occur when farmers or agricultural employees work in close proximity to grain augers. The danger in operating an auger is getting caught in a moving part.
With the proper safety procedures, grain bin accidents are preventable. It is important to follow all the safety rules when it comes to working with grain stored in bins. Here are a few grain bin safety tips to keep in mind when you are working with stored grain:
- Use inspection holes or grain level markers to understand what is happening inside the bin. Use a pole from outside the bin to break up grain bridges.
- Enter a grain bin only if absolutely necessary. If you must get into the bin, use a body harness secured to the outside of the bin. Have at least two people watching over you as you enter and work inside the bin.
- Use hand signals to communicate—and make sure everyone you are working with knows what those signals are.
Throughout the week, Nebraska’s corn, soybean, wheat and sorghum checkoffs and their respective associations will be sharing grain bin safety tips from their social media channels. More information can also be found at standup4grainsafety.org.