One of the most dangerous industries in the United States is, surprisingly, agriculture. Every day, farmers and farmhands are at risk of fatal and nonfatal injuries. When you consider that farming is one of the few industries that rely on families as the primary workforce, farm and agricultural injuries in Madison County affect a chilling number of children. This number is made worse as you do not need to be a worker; just living on a farm or visiting increases the risk of injury. In these scenarios, victims need legal representation from a skilled attorney.
There are more than 58,000 farm-related injuries per year in the United States, according to the CDC. About 400 of this number die in severe accidents.
Common injuries you may encounter in farming environments include:
Most farm equipment and tractors are notoriously hard to operate and heavy. Because of this, the majority of farm-related accidents involve them in some way. More than 4% of all farming accidents in Illinois are the result of a tractor rollover.
Workers can lose fingers, limbs, and other extremities caught in moving gears, chains, and pulley mechanisms.
Most farm tasks require repeated motions like crouching, bending, lifting heavy objects, and many others. These repetitive motions increase the risk of muscle strain, an injury that 11% of farm workers experience in their first year of work.
Many tasks in agriculture involve working at over 5 feet above the ground. Locations like silos, barns, grain bins, trees, and haymows are usually high off the ground.
Falling five feet and landing on your back, neck, or head can cause damage; it can even be fatal.
There are many chemicals used in farming that can cause damage to a person’s skin. More than just chemicals, many farmers suffer from sunburns and can suffer burns from hot machinery.
There is also an increased risk of biting and stinging from insects and animals they tend to.
The second most common type of injury on farms is related to chemical exposure. Long-term pesticide and chemical exposure can lead to breathing problems, vomiting, skin rashes, and a host of other medical problems.
There may be a link to some chemicals used in farming and an increased risk of getting cancer, respiratory issues, and birth defects.
Suffocation is a constant risk for people working in silos full of grain and other farm products. Silos are rarely well ventilated and can lack enough oxygen.
It is common for agricultural workers to suffer from heat stress as they work under the hot sun or in heated environments for hours at a time. Being exposed to such hot conditions can be deadly as it may lead to dehydration, heat cramps, dizziness, heart problems, and heatstroke.
The resulting illness can be worse in people over 65 years and may require hospitalization.
Working outside in the sun with dust and the wind flowing can cause particles to enter the eyes. Eye damage is a common injury in farms and results in various short-term and long-term effects. Short-term conditions include eye irritation and sensitivity, while long-term conditions include cataracts and retinal damage.
Loud machinery can damage ears and cause hearing loss.
Act fast after an accident. You should:
Your employer may have a worker compensation insurance policy that can cover medical expenses.