This manual was prepared by the Texas Agricultural Extension Service in cooperation with the Growers Committee of the Texas Association of Nurserymen. Special thanks to Mortellaro’s Nursery of San Antonio and Mario Perches for special assistance.
Establishing a safety program starts at the top management level. You, as an employer, undoubtedly feel obligated to provide a safe workplace. In addition to general safety concerns, the cost of insurance and workers’ compensation coverage also necessitates the establishment of a strong safety program. The development of strong safety programs will benefit nursery and greenhouse operations by reducing costs and lost production time due to personal injuries.
As an owner or manager, you must decide to take an active and interested part in the safety program as evidence to your employees that you believe safe operations are necessary and important. This lets your workers know that you care about their well-being, which in turn results in greater productivity from those workers.
A strong safety program should include development of safety policies and work rules, sound hiring practices, employee orientation and training, hazard abatement, commitment to injured workers, and maintenance of injury statistics and reports. Each of these subjects is covered in the individual chapters that follow.
Texas Cooperative Extension, in conjunction with the Texas Association of Nurserymen, has developed this safety manual with you in mind. We have tried to arrange it in a way that is easy to understand with specific examples, and at the same time flexible enough to adapt to your operation.