Farm work injuries among a cohort of children in Kentucky, USA

Steven R Browning 1  ,  
Department of Epidemiology, College of Public Health, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky, USA
College of Nursing, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky, USA
Ann Agric Environ Med 2016;23(4):604–611
Children residing on farms with livestock may be at an increased risk for work-related injuries, compared to children who work on other commodity farms. This study characterizes children’s work tasks on Kentucky farms and assesses whether children who work on beef cattle farms are at an increased risk for farm work injuries. The results of a cohort study of children aged 5–18 years (N=999 at baseline) working on family farms in Kentucky, followed for two consecutive years after an initial enumeration five years previously, found that 70% of the children were involved in animal-related chores. Across all age groups, children on beef cattle farms devoted a greater number of hours per week to farm work, compared to children living on other commodity farms, especially during the school year. For all children in the study, working more than 180 days per year, performing farm work independently, and working on a beef cattle farm (compared to other commodity farm), increased the risk of a farm work injury. However, none of these associations were statistically significant. For male children only, the performance of work tasks independently was significantly associated with a 2.4-fold increased risk (OR = 2.41; 95% CI: 1.15–5.06; P=0.02) for a farm work injury, after controlling for days of working, age, period of data collection, and commodity type of the farm.
Steven R Browning   
Department of Epidemiology, College of Public Health, University of Kentucky, Lexington, Kentucky, USA
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