Farm Bureau Makes Safety A Priority

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Cleveland County Farm Bureau Safety Committee Chairman Myron Edwards begins a demonstration.

A hotdog and a pair of rubber gloves served as the props for the demonstration. When those props came in contact with the moving parts of farm machinery, they became shredded beyond recognition.

If that wasn’t a vivid enough example, another Cleveland County Farm Bureau member provided one even clearer – his missing hand that was lost in an auger several years ago.

At all three Cleveland County high schools, local Farm Bureau members conducted safety training sessions with students – similar to what’s done at schools and farms throughout North Carolina. Farm Bureau celebrates Farm Safety Week annually, and members such as the ones in Cleveland County take extra steps to promote ways farmers can protect themselves from permanent or even fatal injuries.

“Our safety committee, chairman Myron Edwards, Wayne Yarbro and several others, put in a considerable amount of time putting those sessions together at each of the high schools in the county,” Cleveland County Farm Bureau President Ronald Price says.

Schoolchildren are excited to answer a question during Rockingham County’s Kids Farm Safety Day Camp.

Members have been organizing safety training sessions at Cleveland County’s high schools for more than five years. Price says the member with the missing limb left the students with lasting thoughts.

“He did a long talk with the students telling them how important it is to be safe,” Price says.

“The students were very impressed,” he adds. “It left quite an impression on them about how easy it is for you to get involved in an accident and get hurt. It showed how you need to be careful at all times. It showed them some things that I don’t think they had ever thought about before.”

In Rockingham County, members Frank and Leola Meador have been overseeing a Kids Farm Safety Day Camp for 16 years. Dozens of elementary-age children participate in a day-long event that shows them how to be safe on the farm when they’re near equipment or animals. Representatives from Duke Energy conducted demonstrations about being aware of power lines, and law enforcement gave tips on staying safe in the community.

Rockingham County Farm Bureau offers financial support to offset the costs of holding the camp.

Programs in Cleveland and Rockingham counties are just two instances of Farm Bureau’s commitment to safety. For example, the Rollover Protective Structure Incentive Program is designed to help offset the cost of installation of factory retro-fitted and dealer installed ROPS and seat belts on farm tractors owned by Farm Bureau members. Approved incentives equal $500 per installation and are limited to one per member.

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