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What are the top causes of backhoe accidents and injuries?

Do you use a backhoe on a regular basis for your job? Are you always working in close proximity to this equipment? If so, you need to realize one thing: This type of equipment can be extremely dangerous.

Here are some of the top causes of backhoe accidents and injuries:

-- Overturn caused by driving on a steep slope. It doesn't matter if you are going up or down a slope, one false move can cause an overturn.

-- Raising the bucket too high on unstable ground.

-- Improper maintenance. Just the same as any type of heavy machinery, backhoes require regular maintenance.

-- Hitting an object, such as a hole, stump or ditch.

-- Falling from the backhoe. There are many causes of this, such as a slippery surface caused by rain.

-- A load that falls on another person. It's best to make sure the area is clear of people before using a backhoe.

-- Starting the backhoe in gear. When this happens, it could begin to move prematurely, thus striking anyone in close proximity.

There is no denying the fact that the use of a backhoe can make many jobs easier to complete. However, it only takes one mistake to cause an accident that leads to serious injury or even death.

If you work on a backhoe, make sure you know exactly what it takes to remain safe at all times. In the event of an accident, don't wait to receive first aid. Report it to your employer and learn more about your right to receive workers' compensation benefits.

Source: National AG Safety Database, "Backhoe and Loader Operational Safety," accessed July 05, 2017

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