I realize that as you read this you may be doing it over your smart phone sitting in the combine or the truck waiting on something. If you are, do me a favor - take a deep breath and make sure everything you do is with safety in mind.
I realize Farm Safety Week has passed, but it's kind of odd to just note a single week. This should be your mantra - Farm Safety Always. And this harvest 2014 crop is going to push your safety to the limit.
Nothing like a record crop with wet weather and the rush to harvest to push you harder than ever. But pushing that hard could be a killer - and I wish I was kidding. With that much wet corn coming in you'll be under pressure to get it from field to storage while maintaining quality. This is no time for safety shortcuts.
The good news is that it appears propane supplies will be better than last year - they'd have to be. Which means drying this crop will not put you under too much pressure. Of course, there's always pressure to get the crop stored properly so it comes out looking great at sale time.
I realize every safety thing you hear sounds more like a sermon - Orion Samuelson spoke about farm safety recently offering his tips for keeping you and your family protected in one of the most dangerous of occupations. Last week we heard about the death of Don Self, a National Peanut Board farmer-member killed during harvest, which brings the message home.
So while trying not to be preachy, please be careful. Take a rest - even a 30-minute nap in the cab is OK if it keeps you alert later. Rushing is necessary, but no shortcuts, which means keeping safety equipment working on equipment.
And we're hoping you have a safe and bountiful harvest. You can worry about the price of what you bring in after it's safely in the bin.