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Work-related injuries among farm workers engaged in agricultural operations in India: a cross-sectional study


Purpose We aim to investigate nature, risk factors as well as magnitude of farm injuries and fatalities among agricultural workers in rural India.

Methods An Agricultural Injury Study (AIS) was conducted using selected 1703 villages in eight states of rural India based on statistical consideration using unstructured proforma for 3086 victims/respodents, who were mostly agricultural workers or farmers. Injury incidence rate (IIR) was estimated per 1000 machines/tools per year for farm machinery and hand tools injuries, and per 100 000 workers per year for other sources. Questions about the injuries involved in farming tasks were used.

Results About 36.2% fatalities were caused by farm machinery that involves tractors. The IIR per year of farm machinery, hand tools and injuries due to other sources were 3.2 per 1000 machines, 0.7 per 1000 tools and 77 per 100 000 workers, respectively. Correlation between number of injury-prone agricultural machines and number of farm machinery injury is r=0.80 (number of injuries increases with increase in number of machines). The χ²=72.53; p<0.01 of number of hand tools and number of farm hand tools-related injuries, that is, they are statistically significant.

Conclusion Exposures to agricultural machineries during farming operations can result in injuries confounding that may be fatal or non-fatal. Mapping down the cause and taking preventive measure to reduce the losses are of major concern. Also, customised safety programme as well as legislative awareness is needed to be raised for the higher injury incidence group.

  • Cross Sectional Study
  • Occupational injury
  • Surveys
  • Farm
  • Exposure

Data availability statement

Data are available on reasonable request.

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