Whether it is working with big machinery, rounding up ornery livestock or dealing with acres of land, farming and ranching is a dangerous business. That is why the Jasper County Farm Bureau recently hosted a safety seminar for young and old alike.

“These events, in general, are pretty important just because they people how to prevent accidents,” Mississippi Farm Bureau Federation Safety Specialist Benton Moseley said. “It raises awareness for adults, children, and anybody who works in agriculture. We all get into a routine and don’t think accidents can happen to us.”

Unfortunately, accidents do happen, which is why the lessons taught during the safety fair could be the difference in life or death.

“I think when people can actually see how quickly an accident can happen and how safety measures could prevent something from happening, it helps,” said Kenneth McNeal, a safety fair participant. “It’s better to see this kind of information in person than looking at it on a TV or hearing about it over the phone.”

Farm Bureau, Jasper County Soil & Water, and Jasper County Board of Supervisors jointly hosted the safety seminar to make sure farmers, ranchers and anyone working in agriculture is reminded just how quickly a dangerous situation can arise.

“We always want to keep our people safe,” MFBF President Mike McCormick said. “Over the years, Farm Bureau has developed a really good safety program to work with our farmers and the public on things that will make them safer and have a better life.”

Mosely said events like the safety seminar target students to expose them to potential dangerous situations and act as a refresher for farmers about how to react should something bad happen.

“When people see a safety situation play out in front of them, it brings a whole new meaning to safety protocols,” Moseley says.

COVID-19 canceled all face-to-face safety programs after March of last year, meaning Jasper County leaders could not host this event in 2020. They were happy to hold it this year because they know it means their community will be safer.

“Farm Bureau always conducts safety programs for fifth grade students in our local schools every year, but because of COVID, it couldn’t be done last year,” Jasper County Farm Bureau member James King said. “We are hoping to start that again this upcoming school year. The program makes a difference. I’ve had seniors who went through the safety course in fifth grade tell me they remember the demonstrations. We hope people take something away from safety events like this so they can maybe prevent an accident and stay safe.”