Employers can reduce injury rates by making sure workers understand how to identify and avoid common landscaping dangers. Safety training is essential for new hires, of course, but employers would be wise to offer continuous weekly safety talks.
Short 10-15 minute on-the-job training sessions often are referred to as “tailgate training” or “toolbox talks.” Frequent safety training keeps injury prevention top-of-mind.
Ohio State University provides a large library of free tailgate training materials developed specifically for landscaping and horticultural workers.
What else can employers do to improve safety?
- Review safety practices with input from employees
- Inspect safety equipment regularly
- Keep tools in good working order
- Provide personal protective equipment and be consistent about requiring proper use
- Provide drinking water at every job site
What can workers do to improve safety?
- Use appropriate safety equipment every time
- Talk to supervisor about safety issues and help problem-solve
- Know the capabilities and limits of machinery
- Let employer know about any health conditions, in case emergency medical care is needed
- Don’t take chances to save time
Make sure employees understand the safety training provided. Several resources offer free training materials in both English and Spanish. Check out the bilingual resources in the links above, as well as the Georgia Center for Urban Agriculture, which offers a video training, study guide, and evaluation package in both languages.