Know the dangerous areas on your equipment | Living the Country Life
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Know the dangerous areas on your equipment

While we love our farm equipment, there are dangerous and potentially harmful areas, which may cause severe injuries. By knowing and understanding the possible dangers, you can operate your equipment safely and efficiently.
  • Safety is key

    Operating any type of machinery comes with its safety hazards. Before you begin using your equipment, be sure to know what it takes to cause a serious accident, and avoid it. 

    Photos courtesy of Ohio State University Extension and Virginia Cooperative Extension.

    Date Published: May 24, 2012
    Date Updated: May 24, 2012
  • Pinch points

    There are many dangerous areas on machines that can cause injury to the operator. One hazard area is a pinch point. Pinch points are formed when two rotating parts move together with one part moving in a circle. The area where sprockets mesh with chains is a great example. Many times fingers, hands, and feet can be caught in pinch points. Avoid this by wearing well-fitted clothing, nothing loose. Turn off machinery if you need to work on it.

    Date Published: May 24, 2012
    Date Updated: May 24, 2012
  • Crush points

    Similar to pinch points, crush points involve two components moving toward each other. In this case, the object may be stationary as well, so one object moves toward a stationary object. The most-well known crush point is the attachment of a hitch. Stay away from potential crush points by waiting until the vehicle has stopped before trying to hitch it. Arrange the hitch point so that the tractor can be backed into position without anyone between.

    Date Published: May 24, 2012
    Date Updated: May 24, 2012
  • Wrap points

    Sometimes called an entanglement point, wrap points pertain to exposed rotating components. Generally rotating shafts are the most common source of wrap-point accidents. Again, cuffs, sleeves, pant legs, long hair, and even thread can get stuck in a rotating part and cause bodily harm. A wrap point has the ability to pull you into a machine or wrap clothing so tightly that you are crushed or suffocated. If you can, shield potential wrap points and paint the equipment part a bright color to call attention to its danger.

    Date Published: May 24, 2012
    Date Updated: May 24, 2012
  • Pull-in points

    Pull-in points have mechanisms designed to take in materials for processing, such as crops.  Equipment using this type of mechanism include combine headers, windrow pickups, forage chopper headers, and grinders. With these you are feeding materials by hand, making it easy for the machine to catch your hand if you don't pay attention.

    Date Published: May 24, 2012
    Date Updated: May 24, 2012
  • Shearing and cutting points

    Shear points are created when the edges of two objects are moved closely together to cut a soft material, think scissors. However, augers have shear points as well. Cutting points are created when a single object moves with enough force or rapidness to cut, as a rotary mower blade does. These machines move so quickly that the shearing or cutting points are not very visible. Sometimes these points can't be guarded, so the operator needs to pay attention to what he/she is doing to avoid an accident.

    Date Published: May 24, 2012
    Date Updated: May 24, 2012
  • Burn points

    Burn points may not cause the intense damage that the other points can cause, but they are dangerous nonetheless. Mufflers, manifolds, engine blocks, pipes, and hot fluids are among the places you can burn yourself. Watch out for these areas to dodge unnecessary burns.

    Date Published: May 24, 2012
    Date Updated: May 24, 2012
  • Springs

    Springs may seem harmless, but they can cause trouble, too. Compressed springs expand with great force once they're released. Stretched springs will contract rapidly when released. With such sudden pressurization or depressurization, there can be crushing and other types of accidents. Know the springs you're dealing with to understand how they may react to force.

    Date Published: May 24, 2012
    Date Updated: May 24, 2012
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