Machinery maintenance – are your records easy to access?
Machinery is easily the most dangerous element on your farm. Your machinery maintenance should be a year-round process that is kept up to date in order to assist with your workplace health and safety.
According to an article by Safe Work Australia, over a period of five years from 2013 to 2018, most fatalities (69 per cent, 129 fatalities) in the Agriculture industry involved a vehicle. The most common vehicles involved were tractors (23 per cent, 44 fatalities) & quad bikes (15 per cent, 29 fatalities).
Understanding and managing the risks that come with using agricultural machinery, such as grain augers, is essential to a safe operating environment. There are regular risk management practices you can put into place, alongside seasonal checks at various times of the year.
How to identify hazards
A good place to start to identify on-farm hazards is to ask yourself a few questions about the plant and equipment that you use and identifying the risks you can see. Talk to the workers who regularly use the equipment as often they have a good idea about the hazards.
It is also essential to keep a record of all servicing or maintenance. Remember it is a legal requirement for you to retain your machinery service records. It’s very easy to keep your records up to date using Safe Ag Systems™ also giving you access to this information, including vehicle maintenance, anywhere, anytime.
Safe Ag Systems™ will allow you to attach a scan-able code to any inventory item which will present your worker with a Safe Work Procedure.
Another factor to consider is the safety of machinery when you’re moving between properties. Ensure you comply with the relevant Codes of Practice and operate at a safe speed, with securely hitched equipment. Properly comply with permit requirements.
Is your equipment ready for harvest?
You should ensure your equipment is kept in a safe, working order at all times, but especially during harvest, your busiest time of year. Have you assessed your current inventory & have you prepared a checklist?
Have you considered?
Safety inspections: Are tractors fitted with an approved roll over protection structure?
Does any preventative maintenance need to be scheduled: Are vehicle tyres worn or damaged?
Has equipment been tested: There are no steering defects? All chains & slings used for lifting have been checked?
Has equipment been cleaned: Are battery terminals and terminal leads clean & secure?
Originally published 02 September, 2020.