Welcome to the ACRE

The Agronomy Center for Research and Education, ACRE, is an outdoor laboratory for Purdue Agriculture. Used for field research and hands-on teaching, the 1,135 acre farm is a busy place with faculty, staff, student, and visitor activity. I am Jim Beaty. I have been Superintendent of the ACRE since 1986. With my four full time staff members, part time help, and student employees we are responsible for operating the research farm. About 53 university researchers conduct projects here at the ACRE. I plan to write about our research, visitors, and farm safety thoughts.

Monday, December 13, 2010

ACRE Safety Thought #23

With 35 buildings and barns at the ACRE, cleaning is a challenge. During the summer many projects decide to clean up their assigned space in barns or bins. If chemical or biological hazards are present, then extra precautions must be used. Since regular cleaning many be neglected or deferred to the summer, the amount of dirt, dust, and build-up may increase exposure load. Barn dust and grain dust can present special hazards due to molds, toxins, or the hanta virus, especially if it is a rodent contaminated area. Ventilation, bleach solution sprays, and personal protective equipment are all recommended when cleaning these dirty areas. You might not want to use a “shop vacuum” in these areas since the vacuum may actually pass infected particles into the air more than simple sweeping and mopping. If farm chemicals are found during clean-up they must be handled and disposed of properly. Don’t hesitate to ask REM for advice and safe procedures for cleaning these areas. Think, plan, and work safely at ACRE.

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