Teaching kids about tractor safety and preparing them for a career in ag

In many states you have to be able to drive a car to drive farm equipment. On Nebraska, kids as young as 14 can get certified. Market Journal introduces us to their tractor safety course, as part of National Farm Safety and Health Week.

The University of Nebraska Medical Center and Nebraska Extension teamed up to create an ag safety program. Fourteen and fifteen-year-olds from all over the state can participate in 10-12 tractor safety courses. These courses aim to instill good safety habits for the young people who are about to transition into a farming role and to meet national requirements as well.

The courses are open to everyone, some are taking the course because they are second career farmers or they are returning back to ag.

Tractor and machinery safety is the key focus for these courses, partly because it is the leading cause of injury in agriculture. However, the courses also touch on general ag safety, such as grain bin safety precautions and other equipment like ATVs.

According to Dr. Aaron Yoder, an UNMC associate professor, “I see it as developing careers for these younger people that maybe weren’t considering agriculture or considering a different career, getting them excited about agriculture again, as well as instilling safety mindsets.”

Experts say that now is a good time to discuss farm safety with children.

Safety tips for the farm.

Raising awareness on the importance of grain bin safety.