• An Image Slideshow
  • An Image Slideshow
  • An Image Slideshow
  • An Image Slideshow
  • An Image Slideshow
  • An Image Slideshow
  • An Image Slideshow
  • An Image Slideshow
  • An Image Slideshow
  • An Image Slideshow
  • An Image Slideshow
  • An Image Slideshow
Irrigation Equipment Safety | Print |  Email

Know How to Stay Safe When Using Farm Irrigation Equipment

Thousands of gallons of water are pumped through irrigation pipes daily. Eventually, all this water starts to clog the pipe with sediment. Raising the pipe in the air may seem like an obvious way to clean out an irrigation pipe. However, a long irrigation pipe could easily become tangled inirrigation pipes power lines, and you could get an electric shock as you become the electricity’s path to the ground.  Irrigation systems are important to farms. However, they carry many risks that farmers should be aware of and know how to manage. Safe Electricity has the following information for farmers to keep in mind. Remember, water and electricity are a dangerous mix. Do not allow irrigation water nozzles to spray on power lines.  A water stream hitting a power line could energize the entire system, creating a shock hazard to anyone nearby or in contact with the equipment.

Take some time to survey your surroundings before moving equipment. Look up and around you; note any power lines that could be close enough to come into contact with equipment —and stay away. Always know the location of nearby electrical lines when working with irrigation equipment. Any contact between the irrigation equipment and nearby electrical lines could be fatal or cause serious injury.

  • Make sure that irrigation system wiring is properly grounded. Before the start of each irrigation season, have a qualified electrician check the pump and wiring.
  • Store unused irrigation pipes far away from power lines or electrical equipment.
  • Position irrigation pipes at least 15 feet away from power lines.
  • Position the water jet streams so that there is no chance of them spraying onto power lines – if this happens, the entire system could become energized, creating a danger for anyone nearby.
  • Stay away from the piping during any lightning activity. Install lightning arresters to protect your equipment.
  • If fuses continually blow or circuit breakers repeatedly trip, have a professional check the wiring. This could indicate a potential electrical hazard.
  • Always shut off and lock the master electrical control switch before servicing the machine.
  • Avoid moving irrigation equipment on windy days when pipes could be blown into nearby power lines. Keep pipes horizontal to the ground rather than vertical to minimize the risk of contact with power lines.

If an irrigation pipe comes in contact with a power line, never try to remove it yourself. Stay away from it and call your local electric utility for help.