According to recent reports, the national rate of death due to farming accidents is 22.1 for every 100,000 workers. This is a very high death rate and demonstrates just how dangerous farming accidents can be. Tim Caress and Caress Law Group have extensive experience in handling cases involving farm accidents, and we fully understand the complexities and challenges that these cases present.
Far and away the most common type of farming accident is tractor-related and often involves tractor overturn. Even though the technology exists to protect workers from overturn (rollover protective structures and high quality seat belts), many tractors do not come with that equipment. It is believed that the survival rate of overturn when the operator is in a properly protected tractor improves from 38% to 99%. It would therefore seem to be totally irresponsible not to provide these safety elements on all tractor models.
Another frequent farm accident is entrapment in a silo, barn, or other similar structure. With as much grain, fruit, hay, etc. that gets moved around, sometimes incidents occur where a worker becomes trapped.
Yet another kind of accident involves spills and exposure. Some farms use heavy amounts of chemicals to treat produce, care for livestock, enhance the soil, and so on. Exposure to these products have the potential to lead to short and long term negative effects.
According to the OSHA fact sheet, there are a few common factors that lead to accidents and fatalities – emergency preparedness, age of workers, protective equipment, and machinery.
In regards to emergency preparedness, it is important for farm workers to understand and account for possible situations that could arise. That means taking an inventory of all hazardous material and equipment on the premises and supplying the proper measures to deal with injury. Injuries can be physical and require first aid, chemical and require poison prevention, and so on. Further, farms are located almost exclusively in rural areas and it can be difficult to get to established medical facilities in time to help serious injuries.
Studies show that people under the age of 15 and over the age of 65 are most likely to be injured. Farm owners and operators should accommodate those people most at risk and make sure they have the proper safety equipment. Further, they should ensure that they have proper training, instruction, and supervision in an effort to avoid accidents.
Machinery is the largest factor in farm injury. Most machines on a farm are very serious pieces of equipment, capable of chopping, shredding, gathering, etc. Metal moving parts on big tractors and other vehicles can spell disaster without proper protective gear. Unfortunately, seat belts and other protective measures are rarely required, and thus can be ignored quite easily.
If you or a loved one has been involved in a farm accident, we would be happy to assist you in any way that we can, but you have to take the first step and reach out to us. You may be concerned about whether you have a case or not, or you may feel a bit overwhelmed by all that may be involved with a claim, or you may be uncomfortable with contacting a lawyer at all. We completely understand. Please know that we would welcome the opportunity to discuss your situation, no matter how big or small it may be, and no matter whether it turns out to be a case that we can help with or not. If we don’t think that you have a case where we can help, we will tell you that and we will explain to you why. On the otherhand, if we do think that you have a case, or that you may have a case, we will tell you that as well, and we will also discuss with you how we may be able to help you. Whatever your situation, please do not hesitate to contact us and know that we view it as an honor and a privilege to have the opportunity to help you in any way that we can.