Kids learn about farm safety


GREENVILLE — More than 100 area children signed up to take part in the annual Progressive Agriculture Safety Day held at the Darke County Fairgrounds Tuesday.

Rhonda Kress, of Darke County Farm Safety for Just Kids, said registration opened in May, and she quickly received requests from all over the county for the 12th annual event. It was open to children age 6 to 13 for just $3 and included lunch and a T-shirt, in addition to the lessons learned.

Progressive Agriculture Safety Day was sponsored by Bunge, Crop Production Services, Agrium, John Deere, TransCanada, CHS Foundation, Enbridge, ADM, Farm Credit and Monsanto.

The day included a session with the Northern Miami Valley Ohio Chapter of the American Red Cross for a Citizen’s CPR demonstration. Citizen CPR is the potentially lifesaving procedure executed by a bystander during a medical crisis until professional emergency responders arrive.

Nathan Cross, of Greenville Crop Production Services led a lesson on chemical lookalikes and chemical dangers. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, in 2012, unintentional poisoning surpassed even motor vehicle crashes as the leading cause of injury death in the United States.

A session on ATV Safety was led by Brad Wilcox of the Greenville Fire Department. As a popular mode of transportation for youth – especially farm youth – in the county, the topic is especially relevant in Darke County.

A Fire Safety program, including a demonstration on the smokehouse, was led by Rossburg Fire Department, and Hannah Barga from the Versailles branch of the Darke County YMCA led a program on Water Safety.

After lunch was a program for the adults participating. The program on Hearing Safety and Awareness was led by Jordan Francis from Wayne HealthCare.

Clinton Randall, along with detectives from the Darke County Sheriff’s Office, led the session for the children on Drug Safety.

The day culminated with the Grain Safety demonstration and lesson, which included the use of the Ohio State University Extension and Ohio State Fire Marshal’s Grain C.A.R.T. (Community Agricultural Rescue Trailer). The portable grain rescue simulator is used statewide by the Ohio Fire Academy for training in grain storage facility rescue and by the OSU Extension for public education on safety around grain storage equipment.

Dee Jepsen travels with the Grain C.A.R.T. statewide teaching grain storage safety.

The Grain C.A.R.T. is mounted on a 40-foot flatbed trailer and includes a grain bin, grain leg, gravity wagon and other training essentials. It was sponsored by Nationwide Insurance (Jordan Agency and Roberts Agency), North Star Hardware and Implement, Phelan Insurance and REBSCO.

Sam Custer, of the Darke County OSU Extension, along with his summer intern Lora Berning, taught the children about reaction time and how there is no way to be fast enough to escape serious harm when coming up against machinery in situations of cuts, entanglements, and pinching and crushing dangers.

The Progressive Agriculture Safety Day program is the largest rural safety and health education program for children in North America. Since 1995, more than 1.4 million children and adults have been impacted through Safety Days. With lessons for more than 28 topics, each Safety Day has the freedom to focus on safety and health-related issues appropriate for their community. Annually, more than 400 local community and school Progressive Agriculture Safety Days are conducted throughout North America.

By Rachel Lloyd

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Reach the writer at 937-569-4354 or on Twitter @RachelLloydGDA. Join the conversation at

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