2017 Pennsylvania Farm Fatal Injury Summary

Annual summaries of farm fatalities help identify hazards and risks associated with production agriculture.
2017 Pennsylvania Farm Fatal Injury Summary - Articles


Annual summaries of farm fatalities help identify hazards and risks associated with production agriculture. This report summarizes Pennsylvania’s 2017 farm fatality data. Fatalities were compared and validated using AgInjuryNews.org and Pennsylvania issued death certificates.


In 2017, there were 30 farm and agricultural fatalities in Pennsylvania. Almost 28% of the fatalities were to youth younger than 18 years and 28% of the fatalities were to 65 and older. Most of the victims were male and 28% of the victims were Anabaptist.

Table 1. Demographics of the victims

Age of Victim

65 and older826.7%





2017 total:

  • Frequency = 30
  • Percentage = 100%

Farm and Agricultural Injury Code (FAIC)

The Farm and Agricultural Injury Classification (FAIC) Code is a classification scheme used to separate out incidents not directly related to the work of production agriculture. The FAIC was introduced in Pennsylvania in 1992 and revised in 2000; therefore 2017 totals can only be compared with 2001-2015 and 2016 totals.

Table 2. Fatalities by Farm and Agricultural Injury Code (FAIC)

Agricultural Occupational (n=17)

FAIC categoryNumber (n=30)Percentage
FAIC-01. Farm Production Work1653.3%
FAIC-02. Forestry and Logging13.3%

Non-Agricultural Occupational (n=13)

FAIC categoryNumber (n=30)Percentage
FAIC 05. Worksite Exposure:Workers, Outside Services26.7%
FAIC 06. Farm Hazard Exposure: Equipment, Tools and Products620%
FAIC 07. Farm Hazard Exposure: Structures & Landscape13.3%
FAIC 08. Farm Hazard Exposure: Animals13.3%
FAIC 09. Farm Hazard Exposure:Roadway Accident310.0%

Fatalities by Injury Source

Fatality reports since 2000 have been used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Occupational Injury and Illness Classification System (OIICS) to characterize primary and secondary sources of injury. BLS revised the structure of categories in 2012. Most changes are subtle, but use caution when comparing the 2017 report to previous reports. The Primary Source of injury or illness identifies the object, bodily motion, or exposure which directly produced or inflicted the previously identified injury or illness. Table 3 provides the frequencies and percentages of primary injury sources.

The Secondary Source of injury or illness identifies the object, substance, or person that generated the source of injury or illness or that contributed to the event or exposure. Secondary source was detected for 10 incidents: Fences, fence panels, gates (3), trees, logs, limbs (2), Farm tractor (2), Walls (1), embankments (1), and passenger van (1).

Table 3. Primary Injury Sources

Primary Injury SourceFrequencyPercentage
Agricultural and garden machinery13.3%
Construction, logging, and mining machinery310.0%
Vehicle and mobile equipment parts26.7%
Plants, trees, vegetation-not processed13.3%
Structures and surfaces13.3%
Geographical structures13.3%
Highway vehicles, motorized310.0%
Animal- and human—powered vehicles26.7%
Off-road and industrial vehicles—powered1343.3%

Agricultural and Garden Machinery Related Fatalities (n=1)

Harvesting and threshing machinery

Child slipped and was struck by the farm equipment

Construction, Logging, and Mining Machinery Related Fatalities (n=3)

Skid steer loader, mini loadersHit by bucket of front end loader
Skid steer loader, mini loadersVictim was repairing skid loader and the boom crushed him
Skid steer loader, mini loadersThe decedent was backed over by a skid steer on a private driveway

Vehicle and Mobile Equipment Parts Related Fatalities (n=2)

Tires, inner tubes, wheelsCaught in explosion while inflating tire on farm equipment
Tires, inner tubes, wheelsCaught in explosion while inflating tire on farm equipment- helping his brother

Animal Related Fatalities (n=3)

Cattle and other bovinesDecedent was crushed between cattle and cattle corral
Cattle and other bovinesFarming accident while moving steer - struck by steer and gate
Cattle and other bovinesStruck by bull

Plants, Trees, Vegetation-not Processed Related Fatalities (n=1)

Trees, logs, limbsTree fell on decedent while he was cutting it

Structures and Surfaces Related Fatalities (n=1)

Structures and surfaces, unspecifiedFarm accident

Geographical Structures Related Fatalities (n=1)

Water bodies—naturalChild fell into small pond at a farm house

Highway Vehicles, Motorized Related Fatalities (n=3)

Trucks—motorized freight hauling and utilityFarm truck loaded with hay went over embankment
SUV, sports utility vehicleCrash involving farm tractor and SUV – SUV driver
SUV, sports utility vehicleCrash involving farm tractor and SUV – passenger in SUV

Animal- and Human—Powered Vehicles Related Fatalities (n=2)

Animal- or human- powered vehicle, unspecifiedDecedent fell off and was run over by horse drawn manure spreader
Animal-powered wagonThrown from animal-powered wagon

Off-road and Industrial Vehicles—Powered Related Fatalities (n=13)

Off-road passenger vehicles—poweredUTV struck a tree and flipped killing the passenger
ATV, all terrain vehiclePassenger on an ATV that rolled over pinning victim underneath
Farm tractorDecedent got pinned between wall and front of tractor
Farm tractorEntrapped between two tractors
Farm tractorFarm tractor accident
Farm tractorTractor accident
Farm tractorTractor accident; somehow run over and tangled in baler
Farm tractorTractor decedent was using to plow field rolled over and pinned him under the tractor
Farm tractorTractor rollover
Farm tractorTractor rollover
Farm tractorTractor rollover
Farm tractorWoman, 25, killed when victim’s minivan collides with tractor
Power take-off (PTO)Fell into PTO shaft of a tractor


We would like to thank Dr. Bryan Weichelt, National Farm Medicine Center, for reviewing the 2017 Pennsylvania fatality data. Eight additional Pennsylvania fatality cases were identified through a comparison with AgInjuryNews.org. These cases were included in Penn State’s data set for 2017.