An assessment of knowledge of farming-related hazards and precautionary practices of farmers in Kwara State, Nigeria
This study assessed knowledge of farming-related hazards and precautionary practices of farmers in Kwara State, Nigeria. A total of 160 respondents were selected using a multi-stage random sampling technique. The statistical techniques used for analysis were frequency count, percentages, Pearson Product Moment correlation (PPMC) and Kruskal wallis ranking. The results show common agricultural production to include maize, yam and cassava. Results also revealed that general body pain (mean=1213.24), poor/careless use of farm tools (mean=119.41), sickness/ill health (mean=1193.01), inhaling of dusts from the air (mean=1122.65) and long distance trekking to farm (mean=1114.08) were the top known hazards among farmers in the study area. Field coat/overall (mean=701.69) ranked 1st, rubber boot/old canvas (mean=692.28) ranked 2nd, use of gloves (mean=646.76) ranked 3rd were the common protective equipment used by farmers in the study area. Other precautionary practices such making of environment clean of debris and sharp objects and cutting of trees/sticks deep into roots to prevent pointed and sharp edges were indicated by 100% of the respondents. Findings further revealed that major constraints to use of protective equipments include; not aware of it importance (80.0%), not convenience while working (62.5%), I was not trained (58.8%). The Pearson Product Moment Correlation analysis showed that precautionary practices such as field coat/ overall, cap/Hat, nose mask and eye goggle were statistically significant to farmers knowledge of farming-related hazards. The study therefore recommends the need for education and training of farmers and farm workers to increase their knowledge and practices of farm related occupational hazards in the study area.
Keywords: knowledge, precautionary practices, farmers, Kwara state.