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Agriculture has the unfortunate distinction as being one of the most dangerous jobs in America. Similarly, hobby farming has seen an increase in injuries in the last five years.

A hobby farm can have different definitions. Most define it as a small-scale farm that is primarily for pleasure instead of being a business venture. The nation's growing embrace of small-scale production of local and organic crops has led to hobby farming’s increased popularity.

Inexperienced growers can run an increased risk of accidents that are preventable. Oftentimes, hobby farmers have little to no experience in agriculture or the equipment.

Even seasoned farmers, however, sometimes make mistakes in a moment of haste. Make 2018 your safest year yet by following these easy tips.

1) One seat one driver— no extra riders.

2) Rollover Protective Structures (ROPS) are required on all tractors for rollover safety.

3) Never trust any hydraulically-raised equipment, such as front-end loaders, dump trailers, etc. Raised equipment can drop suddenly and unexpectedly cause injuries.

4) Be aware of steep hillsides when operating a tractor.

5) Never step over a running Power Take-off (PTO) shaft.

6) Be sure all PTO shields and other safety shields are in good repair and properly secured on all equipment.

7) When work has to be performed on an implement, be sure that the PTO has been shut off and that all machine movement has ceased.

8) Never start a tractor in a closed garage or shed. The carbon monoxide threat can cause a human and/or animal fatality.

9) Always wear close-toed shoes, preferably boots. 

10) Remember to follow safety rules and enjoy your equipment!

Here at Belkorp Ag, we have everything you need to accomplish your tasks safely. So no matter your project or your equipment, we can help. If you’re unsure about how to safely use your