Thanks to generous support of many partners, Pennsylvania is the latest Northeast state to join the Roll-over Protective Structure Retrofit Rebate Program initiated by New York. In New Hampshire, Vermont, New York and now Pennsylvania, you can get a rebate on 70% of purchase, shipping and installation costs of a ROPS device – up to $765.
Your choices are a ROPS rollbar, a ROPS with awning or a ROPS-equipped cab. The program allows retrofitting one tractor per year. Start up of Pennsylvania's program was due to it's sponsorship by: Land-O'Lakes; AgChoice Farm Credit; Mid-Atlantic Farm Credit; Montgomery County Farm Bureau; Farm Family Casualty Insurance Company and Master Farmers Charles and Jane Brosius. This project also is funded by the National Institutes of Occupational Safety and Health.
The ROPS Rebate Program covers 70% of your cost of purchasing and installing the ROPS (Rollover Protective Structure) up to $765 maximum rebate. This includes the cost of the ROPS (rollbar, ROPS with Awning or ROPS cab), shipping, and installation charges.
Don't need one, you argue? Well, there are 58 families in Pennsylvania, alone, that wish their tractors had been ROPS-equipped. That's the number of rollover deaths between 2000 and 2008, the latest years of record, points out Penn State Ag Safety Specialist Dennis Murphy.
New York farmers took part in a follow-up survey after participating in this program. It showed that at least 14 serous injuries or fatalities had been prevented since the ROPS Retrofit Program began in New York State. About 98% of the farmers feel safer with the ROPS retrofit, and 33% want to retrofit another tractor.
For more program details, log on to http://ropsr4u.com/. There, you'll find state-specific information links, plus safety videos and a locator for participating tractor dealers. Apply on-line or call the ROPS Rebate Hotline (1-877-ROPS-R4U or 1-877-767-7748) for registration and pre-approval.
You must be a resident of the state in which you are applying for a rebate. re-approval is required only to ensure that funding is available. Rebates are available on a first come first served basis.
ROPS Rebate Program staff will research the type of equipment needed, provide estimated costs as well as sources for purchasing ROPS and send this information to you. Your rebate can't be confirmed until you confirm where you ordered your ROPS and its estimated cost. If you want to install it yourself, a "before" and "after" photo is required.
If you're attending February's New York Farm Show in Syracuse, stop by the NYCAMH exhibit in the Center of Progress building. Ride in a tractor cab that simulates dangerous tractor tilting. It's on loan from Penn State's Department of Agricultural & Biological Engineering.