As you prepare for this Spring’s planting season, keep these tips in mind.
- Transport Safely
As you’re moving your equipment from one place to another on public roadways, keep in mind that you need to offer many warning signs to other drivers. These large pieces of equipment come with flashing lights and a variety of other warning systems to help alert other drivers, but you should take it one step further. Be sure to have signs that clearly say “Slow Moving Vehicle” visible to the other drivers since you will be moving at a much slower pace than traffic.
- Follow the Label
Read herbicide, pesticide, fungicide and seed labels thoroughly before using them. Many have warning statements, such as, wear long sleeves and protective eyewear while using. These shouldn’t be overlooked. If a product happens to get on your skin and/or in your eyes, it’s a great idea to keep a book of product labels close by, so you know what to do before entering a state of panic.
- Maintain Equipment
Just like your car, your farm equipment needs to stay serviced. Just because you serviced it last season doesn’t mean it does not need to be looked at again. Some common areas to check are your oil levels, tire pressure, hydraulic system, brake fluid, etc. You don’t want to get into the field and have problems in the middle of a job.
- Stay Healthy
Spending hours and hours in the field does not mean you should skip your meals. Without sleep and proper nutrition, you will be operating on an empty tank. Your reaction time will decrease because of your exhaustion, increasing your chance of an accident. The Center for Disease and Control suggests that you get seven to nine hours of sleep per night and pack food with you on the job!
- Watch for Children
Although every kid wants to drive a tractor, they shouldn’t. But, if they do happen to be in the cab with you, make sure they’re wearing a seatbelt, and you have taught them the key safety tips to operating it. When you aren’t around, make sure you do not leave the keys in tractor These large pieces of equipment are dangerous and very noisy, which attract children. It only takes seconds for a child to start the engine and hurt themselves.