Especially with harvest time approaching, larger Missouri farming operations may be hiring special workers to help gather in this year’s crops. Hopefully, this year’s harvest time will be a safe and prosperous one for both the farmers themselves and their workers. However, a recent case from another state also makes for a good opportunity to remind both farm employees and their employers about the risks of farm work and their respective responsibilities to maintain a safe working environment.
One man sustained an arm injury in connection with a workplace accident while he was helping out with this year’s corn harvest in another state. Emergency personnel responding to the scene reported that the man’s arms had been crushed by a “corn husker”, a piece farm machinery that, as its name implies, removes the thick husks from the ears of corn when they are harvested.
Reportedly, the man was trying to clear the machine of debris when he got sucked into the machine’s moving parts. Fortunately, the man’s co-workers noticed, managed to turn off the machine and extract the man. After the accident, the man had to be flown to a hospital for further treatment of his injuries. His exact condition is unknown but judging by the reports, the man may have sustained a very serious and potentially debilitating injury.
One of the biggest hazards facing Missouri farmworkers is the heavy and complicated machinery that they must operate in order to do their jobs. As illustrated by the case here, it is fairly easy for even a cautious worker to get stuck in a machine and suffer a severe or even fatal injury as a result. Employers must therefore do their utmost to promote a safe working environment on their farms. Those employees who do suffer injuries may in the right circumstances qualify for workers’ compensation benefits.
Source: St. Cloud Times, “Seasonal worker from California injured in corn-husking accident,” Sept. 22, 2013