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Legislation - Department of Labor’s List of Hazardous Jobs for Minors

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Department of Labor’s List of Hazardous Jobs for Minors


Under the FLSA, the Department of Labor is responsible for determining what jobs are hazardous and therefore prohibited for children under age 16 working on farms that are not owned or operated by their parents (or for some tasks, children ages 14 and older who have received special training). Children 16 years of age and older are allowed to work in agriculture with no restrictions.

List of farm jobs commonly performed by children declared Hazardous by the Secretary of Labor

  • Operating a tractor of over 20 Power Take Off (PTO) horsepower, or connecting or disconnecting an implement or any of its parts to or from such a tractor
  • Operating or working with a corn picker, cotton picker, grain combine, hay mower, forage harvester, hay baler, potato digger, mobile pea viner, feed grinder, crop dryer, forage blower, auger conveyor, unloading mechanism of a nongravity-type self-unloading wagon or trailer, power post-hole digger, power post driver, or nonwalking-type rotary tiller
  • Operating or working with a trencher or earthmoving equipment; fork lift; potato combine; or power-driven circular, band or chain saw
  • Working in a yard, pen, or stall occupied by a bull, boar, or stud horse maintained for breeding purposes; a sow with suckling pigs; or a cow with a newborn calf (with umbilical cord present)
  • Felling, bucking, skidding, loading, or unloading timber with a butt diameter of more than 6 inches
  • Working from a ladder or scaffold at a height of over 20 feet
  • Driving a bus, truck, or automobile to transport passengers, or riding on a tractor as a passenger or helper
  • Working inside a fruit, forage, or grain storage designed to retain an oxygen-deficient or toxic atmosphere; an upright silo within 2 weeks after silage has been added or when a top unloading device is in operating position; a manure pit; or a horizontal silo while operating a tractor for packing purposes
  • Handling or applying toxic agricultural chemicals identified by the word "poison" or "warning," or identified by a "skull or crossbones" on the label (chemicals classified as Category I or II of toxicity). Children under 16 can still work with pesticides of lower toxicity
  • Handling or using explosives
  • Transporting, transferring, or applying anhydrous ammonia (commonly used as fertilizer)

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