NSW safety authorities have issued a specific warning on the use of augurs.

Several workers are seriously injured each year using a grain auger - an agricultural screw elevator used to raise grain from the ground to the top of grain bins or to load trucks.

Minister for Better Regulation Matt Kean said a quick safety assessment could help prevent these incidents.

“As we approach the end of the year I want to ensure safety remains at the forefront of all workplaces,” he said.

“I urge all farmers to put the safety of their workers, themselves and any other visitors first by identifying and addressing any safety risks before using farming machinery like augers.

“Augers can cause fatal and horrific injuries when clothing and limbs are caught and pulled into the machinery, which is why they are a focus of the Agriculture Sector Plan I recently launched at the Australian National Field Days.

“Simple steps, such as ensuring an auger has a correctly fitted intake guard and an accessible emergency stop switch and making sure any belts or other moving parts are also guarded, can significantly reduce the risk of injury.

“Moving large augers around farms can also be hazardous so farmers should ensure power lines are clearly marked, all workers are made aware of power line locations and augers are lowered if their design allows.

“No farms should have unsafe augers in service. If all rural workplaces spend just a few minutes identifying and addressing safety controls then catastrophic auger incidents can be prevented.”

SafeWork NSW says it has a range of free guidance material on how to reduce risks and improve safety on farms and rural workplaces, including the safe use of augers.