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Safety first: Basic planter safety tips
As the size and complexity of farm equipment grows—coupled with the power of their hydraulics and mechanical systems—safety becomes more important than ever. That’s why it’s crucial to take a few minutes to review your operator’s manual safety information before each season. The payoff? A safer and more successful growing season.
Here are a few basic safety rules to keep in mind:
- Always remember that the operator’s manual is the “go to” resource when you have questions about how to operate your machine. Refer to it for complete safety information.
- When operating on public roads, always use lights, flashers and turn signals for maximum visibility. Maintain a clean and visible “Slow-Moving Vehicle” sign on the rear of the machine.
- For the best field performance and the most secure road transport, make sure the weight of the implement does not exceed the recommended towing capacity of your tractor. This is especially important in areas with high traffic and hills that increase the braking demands necessary to maintain safe control. When transporting front-fold planters, empty seed and fertilizer boxes and tanks whenever possible to reduce tractor drawbar load and total planter weight.
- When transporting equipment, maintain safe maximum travel speeds to assure complete control, and the ability to stop in case of emergency. Refer to tractor and planter operator’s manual recommendations for maximum transport loading and weight.
- Removing guards for service work is no excuse to leave guards off during operation. Guards are intended to protect operators and any other persons, and must remain intact and installed as originally designed.
- Review the operator’s manual to identify and understand the use of service locks prior to starting service operations.
- Engage service locks for all service operations. Use jack-stands or secure blocking when working under or around raised equipment. Never work on the planter without securely setting and locking service and transport locks in position and removing machine weight from the hydraulics systems.
- When servicing ground-engaging components such as opening disks and firming points, use special care to avoid points and edges worn sharp during use.
- Chemical application is often an integral part of planting. Use the utmost care to protect yourself, other people and the environment from the effects of overexposure to agricultural chemicals. Follow label instructions for proper chemical mixing, handling and container disposal methods.
- Observe and inspect all warning decals on the machine, and replace any decals that are damaged and unreadable.
- Never raise or lower the machine during service. Numerous linkages are used to move and suspend components. Pinch points between linkage and other parts of the machine are inherent, and could cause injury to unsuspecting workers.
See our Early Riser Planters in action below.
For planter inspection video tips, click here.
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