On-The-Job Safety

Proper positioning and stretching exercises will help prevent long-term injuries.

As a farrier, you’re going to be working in a field with certain inherent dangers. You already know that and if you’re finishing up horseshoeing school, odds are you’ve already had first-hand experience with some of them.

But while aches, pains and a certain number of injuries are almost inevitable, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take every precaution. Improving your horse-handling ability and your awareness of horses while you’re working a big part of keeping safe (see Pages 22-25). But it’s also important to use protective equipment and take precautions against long-term health problems that are less obvious than bites and kicks from a horse.

Eye Protection

One of the best and easiest safety precautions you can take is to wear eye protection while working — particularly when at the anvil. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) estimates that approximately 1,000 eye injuries take place in the work place daily.

But the same source estimates that 90% of eye injuries can be prevented by the simple act of wearing appropriate eye protection — safety glasses or welding masks or goggles when appropriate.

Obviously, eyes are particularly at risk when you’re working at the anvil or using power tools such as grinders on shoes. But bits of hoof can become projectiles as you trim a hoof while debris such as dirt, manure and chips of ice can be hazardous in as simple a task as cleaning a hoof.

Safety glasses are usually made of glass, plastic or polycarbonate. Prevent Blindness…

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Pat tearney

Pat Tearney

Pat Tearney is a long-term newspaper and magazine veteran writer and editor. Before retiring, he served for a number of years on the American Farriers Journal staff and continues to share his writing talents with our readers.

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