Each year across the United States, more than 100 children die and about 24,000 experience a serious injury associated with farming. During the past decade, 36 Ohio youth died in an agricultural-related incident. Those are statistics that Ohio State University Extension's Agricultural Safety and Health Program is trying to change, in part by sponsoring annual farm safety day camps.
In the past 11 years, more than 15,000 youth have participated in an Ohio farm safety day camp. These camps have been sponsored by OSU Extension, the Ohio Farm Bureau, the Ohio 4-H Foundation and The Nationwide Foundation, with "Our Ohio" joining the effort this year. Farm Safety Round-Ups offer educational sessions that focus on rural safety. An estimated 3,000 youth are expected to attend this year's camp events in communities throughout Ohio between April and October.
"Everyone in the community can benefit from a farm safety day camp experience," says Dee Jepsen, OSU Extension's safety leader. "Rural injuries can occur to anyone, not just farm kids."
OSU Extension's Agricultural Safety and Health Program, housed in the Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering, is a nationally recognized center of excellence for educational Extension programming and agricultural safety and health research. In addition to traditional agricultural safety issues, other program areas include Amish buggy safety, disaster education and sun safety. For more information regarding the Farm Safety Round-Up program, see its Web site at www.ag.ohio-state.edu/~agsafety/ash/programs/day_camps.html.
This year's Farm Safety Camp program will be held in:
* Putnam County, April 15 and 16, at the Ruth Gerding Farm. Contact Ruth Gerding, (419) 523-5608 or email@example.com.
* Ross County, May 15, at the Ross County Fairgrounds. Contact David Mangione, (740) 702-3200 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
* Morrow County, in May, at the Morrow County Fairgrounds. Date to be determined. Contact Becky Barker, (419) 947-1070 or email@example.com.
* Wood County, in May, at the Agriculture Incubator Foundation. Date to be determined. Contact David Little, (419) 833-6014 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
* Belmont County, Sept. 26. Location to be determined. Contact Stephen Schumacker, (740) 695-1455 or email@example.com.
* Monroe County, in September at Beallsville Elementary School. Date to be determined. Contact Bruce Zimmer, (740) 472-0810 or firstname.lastname@example.org.