The Ohio AgrAbility Program has produced nine new fact sheets designed to assist disabled farmers who may be dealing with paralysis, arthritis, diabetes or who have developed age-related issues.

"Once someone gets back to farming after experiencing an injury, they're at higher risk because of issues regarding range of motion, mobility or reaction time," said Kent McGuire, Ohio AgrAbility program coordinator. " Most of the new fact sheets are designed to help those farmers prevent secondary injuries, although they include important safety information for any farmer."

Fact sheet topics came from the organization's work with farmers who have asked for information on these issues.

This group is the first in a series of 40 new fact sheets the Ohio AgrAbility Program plans to produce over the next year. This first set is available for download now as PDF files at http://ohioline.osu.edu/lines/farm.html#FSAFE.

Fact sheet topics are:

* Secondary Injury Caused by Lifting, AEX-981.1-10: About 25 percent of Ohio work-related injuries are caused by overexertion when lifting objects.

* Secondary Injury Prevention: Caught-in, Caught-between, or Struck by Objects, AEX-981.2-10: Serious injuries may result by being caught in, caught between, or struck by moving equipment on the farm. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration lists these types of accidents among the "big four" workplace hazards.

* Secondary Injury Prevention: Walking and Working Surfaces, AEX-981.3-10: Slips, trips and falls cause about 20 percent of all workplace injuries. By taking a few precautions, the potential for such accidents can be minimized.

* Secondary Injury Prevention: Heat Stress, AEX-981.4-10: Anyone with certain pre-existing conditions, such as limited mobility, heart disease or those taking certain medications, can be at higher risk for heat stroke and heat exhaustion. That's especially true in extreme conditions, such as working six to eight hours in hot weather -- common in agriculture.

* Overexertion Causing Secondary Injury, AEX-981.5-10: Following some simple steps, including using proper tools and materials, can reduce injuries caused by overexertion.

* Secondary Injury Prevention: Ergonomics for the Farm, AEX-981.6-10: Continuous activity over a long period of time can cause muscle stresses and strains; following guidelines designed to keep workers safe, comfortable and productive can reduce risk of these injuries.

* Secondary Injury Prevention: Safety for Senior Farmers, AEX-981.7-10: While the estimated median age of Ohioans is 37.9, the average age of farmers in Ohio is 57. Changes in reaction time, balance, the musculoskeletal and respiratory systems, hearing, and vision can all increase the risk of injury.

* Secondary Injury Prevention: Farming with a Pacemaker, AEX-981.8-10: Several precautions for using tools and equipment are recommended for farmers with pacemakers.

* Extending Universal Design Principles onto the Farmstead, AEX-983.1-10: This fact sheet gives specific recommendations for incorporating the concepts of Universal Design, which transforms living and working spaces to be comfortable and usable by all people, into the farmstead.

For more information about the Ohio AgrAbility Program, contact McGuire at mcguire.225@osu.edu or 614-292-0588, or see the website at http://agrability.osu.edu.