UW Offers New Farm Electrical Maintenance Course

The University of Wisconsin–Madison’s Farm and Industry Short Course program will be offering a new Farm Electrical Maintenance and Safety short course in July. The training is designed for farm owners, field managers and others who work on electrical infrastructure on the farm. Participants will learn about the laws, procedures, tools, protective gear, and also other basics for staying safe while troubleshooting or maintaining electrical equipment.

The course is also for electricians and electrical inspectors. They can earn 4.0 continuing education units by attending this code-related training.

The new short course will be held in two parts. The first session will take place at the UW Hancock Agricultural Research Station on the morning of July 11. The second session will be on July 16, with a morning classroom session at Hancock ARS. The afternoon field experience will be at Flyte Family Farms in Coloma, Wisconsin.

“This training was requested by a number of producers looking to expand their workforce professional development. In particular, they wanted to be able to offer electrical safety education – for themselves and their teams – to help reduce the risk of injury or death on the farm,” says Heather Gayton, outreach program manager in the UW–Madison College of Agricultural and Life Sciences Office of Extension and Outreach.

Session 1: Laws, regulations and standards for maintaining farm electrical infrastructure

July 11, 2024, 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. -Hancock Agricultural Research Station, N3909 County Road V, Hancock, WI
Topics covered: Laws governing the electrical work done by farm workers, updates to Occupational Safety and Health Administration regulations, plus federal standards and also best practices for maintaining electrical systems.
Field experience: Adams-Columbia Electric Cooperative will host a demonstration at Hancock ARS, covering the safety gear worn by electric line workers as well as explaining the impacts of contact with energized power lines.
Please note: Short course participants are welcome to stick around for the Hancock station’s Potato Research Field Day, a separate event, which also runs during the afternoon on July 11.

Session 2: Equipment and work practices for safely testing and troubleshooting electrical equipment

July 16, 2024, 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. -Morning location: Hancock ARS, N3909 County Road V, Hancock, WI
Afternoon location: Flyte Family Farms, W13450 Cottonville Ave., Coloma, WI
Topics covered: Equipment, practices and federal requirements to safely test and troubleshoot electrical equipment, plus the basics of grounding and bonding.
Field Experience: Flyte Family Farms will host an on-farm demonstration. Attendees will also have the opportunity to do a mock electrical inspection walk-through with licensed electrical educators.

The deadline to register for the Farm Electrical Maintenance and Safety short course is June 28. The cost is $350 per person. Translation and also interpretation services will be offered from English to Spanish. For more information and to register, visit https://go.wisc.edu/electricalsafety.