According to a recent statistical report, people who work in the farming industry in Minnesota and throughout the country face more dangers leading to serious injury or death as compared to other industrial jobs. Additionally, since many farms are family-owned and -operated, those from the farmer’s household who are hired are also exposed to many dangers involved in the industry.
In 2012, almost 2 million employees worked full-time for the agricultural production industry in the U.S. During that same year, about 260,000 young people were employed on farms. The report further noted that around 170 agricultural-related injuries occur daily, with 5 percent resulting in a permanent impairment. In regards to young farm workers who were injured during 2012, the total amount came to about 14,000.
Farm-related fatalities during 2012 came to 374, which being translated to about 20 deaths for every 10,000 farm employees. The major cause of those deaths was due to overturned tractors. For the years between 1995 and 2002, there were about 100 young farm workers 20 years old and less who suffered a fatal farming accident, one-third of whom were young workers between the ages of 16 and 19. The common causes of death among young farm workers were due to machinery, motor vehicles and drowning.
Even with the implementations by government including the installation of Roll-Over Protective Structure mechanisms to keep tractors from overturning, farming accidents and illnesses can still take place due to equipment malfunctions, pesticide exposure and various accidents, for example. Workers’ compensation benefits are available to any worker who has been hurt on the job and who may be unable to return to work during the recovery period. Some of the benefits include payments to cover the worker’s lost wages and medical expenses.
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Agricultual Safety“, December 08, 2014