As part of the National Farm Safety and Health Week, agricultural
employers in California and across the United States are being reminded of
the hazards of grain handling and the dangers of working in confined spaces
this week, according to officials at the California Department of Industrial
Relation's Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA).
National Farm Safety and Health Week spans from Sept. 15-21 and
serves as a time for employers to receive education and training on safe
grain and silage handling.
According to Cal/OSHA, seven fatalities occurred in 2011 as a
result of employees working in a confined space. That number was up from two
fatalities in 2010.
Cal/OSHA initiated a Special Emphasis Program on Confined Spaces
in January 2012 which featured educational outreach to employers in English
The program also increased government enforcement of safety
regulations in general industry, construction and agriculture.
Employers are required to have a written confined space plan,
procedures to test the air inside a confined space, training for employees
working in confined spaces and an effective emergency rescue plan, Cal/OSHA
Employers or employees who need additional help on working safely
in confined spaces, can contact Cal/OSHA Consultation Service at (800)