Ag Safety StoryCorps®

Listen and Learn from Your Fellow Farmers! 

AG StoryCorps®

Life-Changing Agriculture Injuries


The Pacific Northwest Agricultural Health and Safety (PNASH) Center formed a  partnership with StoryCorps®, the largest national oral history project in the U.S., to document how farm injuries and near misses can be transformative life-changing events. Growers and producers with stories to share came to one of two recording sessions accompanied by a family member or friend with whom they recounted how the accident happened, its consequences and lessons learned. All volunteers were motivated to participate in hopes that others who might hear their stories would think more about safety in the agricultural workplace.

Brett talks about how his harobed tipped overTrack 1: Brett. Harobed Rollover (2:43)

“If that rack had failed ….. that potentially could have wiped me out.”
  • Brett Schrom, a hay grower/beef producer, describes to his sister Neesha how his harobed tipped over, throwing him off because the steering locked up. As result he has changed his maintenance practices. 
“ Don’t wear jewelry when you are working around farm equipment.”
  • Diana Hansen, wheat farmer, recounts to her daughter Tanya Mitchell losing her arm, relearning to do everything and how she chose to go on with her life as opposed to living it as a victim.
“Jason was on the slab with his little red tractor, mimicking his dad….[he] got to the slick part, put his feet down to stop and he did not stop. He scooted right off into the (hole) and splashed right down into the manure tank.”
  • Gloria Edwards tells granddaughter Eryn how her child fell through an open hole into their dairy farm manure pit while playing and was luckily rescued by his dad who was able to grab him by his coat collar. 
“The biggest mistake was me being up there by myself, particularly at my age, and maybe I should not be in such a hurry all the time.”
  • Ron McHargue describes to son Mike his fall from a ladder on a metal grain tank while trying to remove a sweep augur by himself.
“My brother’s mind was on the spraying and not on backing the ATV up.“
  • Russell Zacharison, wheat farmer, recounts discovering his elderly bachelor brother Walter in his shed 10 days after he had been crushed by his ATV.
“If you ride ATV’s there’s really only two categories of riders, those
that have already had an accident and those whose accidents are pending.”
  • Eric Zacharison and his father Russell  discuss how quickly a slow moving ATV can flip, as was the case when Russell got pinned down by his ATV for eight hours out in his pasture.
“I’ve learned you have to be very cautious on a farm with kids and machinery.”
  • Scott Furrer, dairy farmer, describes how shook up he was when his son Chris as a young child got his hand caught between a flywheel and shield, burning off the top of his fingers.
“It hit home how important safety is and how much our parents loved us. Another little reality check on being careful around everything. Life is short.”
  • Chris Furrer describes to his father Scott rolling his tractor on their dairy farm, being terrified his brother was underneath it and finally crawling out thought the cab roof.
 “A bull in the group had a little bit of an attitude.”
  • Victor Jensen, third-generation dairy farmer, tells about finding his dear friend, an experienced animal handler, face down in the bedding of a pasture…”The bull had gotten him.”
“Sometimes we get in a hurry and don’t think about what we’re doing and that’s when we get into trouble.”
  • Wade Wipperling tells friend Else Kimball how a stack of unstable bales of hay fell on his head, breaking his neck.