With so much field work happening at present, do not take your eye off farm safety when working with machinery. Outlined are five areas that safety can be easily overlooked.

1. Silage trailers in the yard

Silage harvesting involves a lot of machinery moving in and out of yards, often with a bit of urgency. Keep young children out of the yard while trailers are on the go. The same goes with farm pets.

2. Visibility at field gateways

Make sure gateways have nothing obstructing a driver’s view when pulling out of a field or the yard with a trailer. Cut back any foliage that may impair vision at gateways.

Flashing beacons on the tractor roof will make machines more visible to oncoming traffic as machines pull out on to the road. Make sure brake lights and indicators on trailers work.

3. Filling the clamp

Take care when buckraking or rolling the clamp. Short grass can cause the clamp to split if it is not filled evenly and consolidated properly.

Once filled, be careful when covering the pit. Proceed with caution when walking along side walls to fit the plastic sheet.

4. Bales

With bales, the tractor may need front weights fitted to keep the machine balanced when transporting bales on the back.

Stack bales upright. When baling short, leafy grass that has not been wilted, stacking bales in single rows is best as they may sag. If space is limited, limit the stacking height at two bales high.

Bales made from high-dry matter grass, with plenty of stem, tend to hold their shape better and can be stacked three high. Make sure the stacking area is level for loader work.

5. Slurry

Where slurry is going out on silage aftermath, take care when mixing tanks. Do not leave filling or mixing points unguarded at any time.

Make sure PTO shafts are properly covered and chained in a stationary position when filling the tanker. Travel with caution on sloped ground with a full tanker.

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