SafetyWatch: Safe fertilizer spreading tips

September 15, 2016 -  By

white_coverA fertilizer spreader, which is used to apply fertilizer and other granular products to surfaces, poses several personal and bystander hazard risks.

Fertilizer is typically labeled as a possible dust inhalation hazard. Certain types of fertilizer or opening bags indoors may create dusty conditions, and you may need a dust mask. Fertilizers mixed with pesticides or granular pesticides may pose a toxic dust inhalation hazard. Follow the safety instructions on the pesticide label and ask your supervisor.

Fertilizers may irritate your skin, especially if you cover sweaty parts of your body, like your forearms, with the material. Wash your hands and other bare skin after contact. Pesticide labels may require you to wear gloves when handling raw product; however, there is usually no need to touch these granular products if you handle the bags carefully.

Handling fertilizer bags carefully is also important because they are awkward, heavy and can cause straining injuries if you try to do too much or go too fast when handling.

When it comes to bystanders, be sensible and courteous. Stop and allow others to pass before resuming fertilizing.

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