The sounds and smells of harvest are all around us right now. We are thrilled to see our local farmers bringing in their crops after a long season of planting and preparation.
At Credence we recognize that our local economy is driven by agriculture and we are so thankful for all the work and effort that goes into this industry.
One of the ways we contribute to the farming industry is through maintenance on grain handling facilities. With this in mind we thought we could offer some safety tips for the grain elevator operators in the crowd. And really, for anyone handling grain this harvest season.
Grain handling presents several hazards to be aware of and guard against: fires and explosions from grain dust accumulations, suffocation from engulfment or entrapment in bins, falls, crushing injuries and amputation from heavy equipment. The best safety plan starts with awareness and prevention. The following will give you a few ideas for what to look for and how to avoid dangerous situations.
Moving grain acts similar to quicksand and once a person starts to sink in it they will have a hard time getting out without assistance. Workers should avoid walking on moving grain and be watchful when they clear grain built up on the inside storage buildings. Employees should wear a body harness with a lifeline if they enter a bin or storage building with grain in it.
Explosions and fires
Grain dust is highly combustible and can ignite under the right circumstances. Ensure both grain dust and ignition sources are controlled in the elevator or storage bins to minimize the risk of such explosions or fires. Test the air prior to human entry for the presence of combustible and toxic gases and to determine the oxygen levels. Control hot work situations to minimize the chance of combustion.
Grain handling facilities are high and falling is a real and present danger. Employees working at these heights should be equipped with proper harnesses and trained for working at heights.
Farm equipment such as augers and conveyors can cause entanglement and amputation hazards. Ensure proper guards are installed correctly and maintain proper distance when this machinery is in operation.
Our crew is available and able to repair and maintain all the equipment at a grain elevator. We work to ensure your employees are safe and the grain handling process runs smoothly. Give us a call for more information.