Safety tips for farmers when handling anhydrous ammonia

MINOT, N.D. (KFYR TV) As North Dakota farmers cultivate their crops, many use anhydrous ammonia gas.

The gas brings great benefits to crops by replenishing nitrogen in the ground, but it can also pose a threat to people.

If you are using anhydrous ammonia and transferring it from a large holding tank to a nursing tank, you should always follow these tips:

-Wear goggles and gloves

-Wear long sleeves and a hat, to avoid exposing skin

-Make sure that valves are properly tightened shut when done transferring the gas

-Have plenty of water on hand, as water is the only solution to flush exposed areas

-When done injecting the gas into the soil, shut off the anhydrous flow to prevent leaks

-Tell someone you know that you are working with the gas, in the event of an accident

“Never wear contact lenses around the anhydrous because if you get a shot of it, it’ll freeze the lens to your eyes, and you wouldn’t be able to get your lens out, and it would probably cause blindness or serious eye damage,” said Mike Miller, the safety director for CHS Sun Prairie and Dakota Agronomy Partners.

If you suspect there is an anhydrous ammonia leak you should call 9-1-1 and the authorities can inspect the area to see if there is a threat to the public.

If you have questions about how to property handle and transfer anhydrous ammonia, you can contact Miller at: (701) 852-1429.