Tractor Guarding

All moving parts and other hazards must be properly guarded, both on the main body of the tractor and also including any attachments that may be in use.

Guarding design, according to “Safe use of tractors with attachments” must:

  • Ensure operators are separated from the hazard
  • Fully enclose the hazard and prevent any part of the body or clothing from accessing the moving parts
  • Adhere to The Australian Standard, AS 4024:2006 Safety of machinery
  • Ensure that guards be fixed, or remain attached to the machine by a hinge or lanyard

Working tractors should be regularly serviced. If tractor guards must be removed during servicing, cleaning or other maintenance, guards should be inspected for damage. If necessary, the guard should be repaired, and should always be replaced when servicing is complete.

Agricultural Power Take Off’s (PTO) rotate very quickly, and as such present danger to farm employees. Regarding PTO master guards and shaft guards, the Worksafe handbook states:

Guarding must be fitted to agricultural tractors even though at the time of manufacture the tractor PTO and shaft was not guarded. The PTO, shaft and its universals should be regularly inspected for wear and all guards maintained and replaced when they are damaged or worn.

The handbook also warns that farm employees should never work near an operating PTO, even if the appropriate guards are in place.

As well as appropriate and compliant guards, tractor hazards can also be minimised by ensuring that farm workers do not:

  • Wear loose clothing or jewellery
  • Wear long hair loosely – hair should always be tied back
  • Check a tractor engine while the machine is still running
  • Work with or near a tractor that is not adequately guarded

For more information about tractor safety, please see the Worksafe handbook for the “Safe use of tractors with attachments.”

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