More than 250 students learned about safety on the farm
Special to the Journal
Agriculture currently ranks as one of America’s most dangerous industries with nearly 30 deaths per 100,000 workers annually, according to the National Safety Council. Tragically, many of the victims are children. The Monsanto site in Leesburg, Ga., is working to change that and teamed up with local organizations to host a Progressive Agriculture Safety Day, where they taught 270 fourth-graders at Lee County Elementary School about potential farm dangers.
The event took place on Friday, May 4. Fifty volunteers worked with the students, including representatives from the Monsanto Leesburg site, Leesburg Police Department, Lee County Farm Bureau, the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Lee County Fire Department, Leesburg Animal Rescue, the Lee County Public Works Department, Albany Tractor Company and the Sheriff’s Department, among others.
“This is the third consecutive year we have taken part in this event,” said Pamela Barrett, ESH tech specialist at Monsanto’s Leesburg site. “We shared safety tips with the entire fourth-grade class of 9-and 10-year-olds at Lee County Elementary School. Spending the day with them is worth it if we can help prevent even one child from becoming injured.”
Safety presentations during Agriculture Safety Day included a variety of topics, such as tractors, all-terrain vehicles, fires, animals, guns and boating.
“Farm safety is important to our students because we live in a rural, farming community,” said Donna Ford, principal at Lee County Elementary School. “Every demonstration at Progressive Ag Day is a real experience for our students. Several of the speakers discussed things that can be linked to their home lives, too. The information presented to the students can be life-long lessons.”
The Progressive Agriculture Safety Day program is a one-day, hands-on workshop that teaches school-aged children safe practices in and around agriculture. These events offer youth educational resources to promote safe farm environments and prevent health hazards and fatalities. For more information, visit http://www.progressiveag.org.
A Lee County firefighter extinguishes fire during safety presentation at Progressive Ag Safety Day held at Lee County Elementary School.