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Biological and Agricultural Engineering

Kansas Hazardous Occupation Training

Introduction | 2019 Schedule of H.O.T. Training Sessions | Slide Shows |
HOSTA Task Sheets | Fair Labor Standards Act | Hazardous Occupation Orders for Agriculture | Occupational Safety and Health Act |
Teen Worker Safety In Agriculture | Resources For Instructors


The Kansas Hazardous Occupation Training (H.O.T) is conducted to provide compliance with three pieces of federal legislation governing children in occupational settings. The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), Hazardous Occupation Orders for Agriculture (HOOA), and Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA) were established to provide protection for children in occupational settings.

In order for youth ages 14 and 15 to work for hire, they must pass a 4-H (or similar) safe tractor and machinery operation program or complete a similar course conducted as part of a high school agriculture program.

The Kansas Hazardous Occupation Training (H.O.T.) program, offered through county offices of K-State Research and Extension, may fulfill the training requirements of the HOOA law. The objectives of the H.O.T. program are:

To provide trainees with knowledge of tractor, machinery, and other farm hazards to reduce the farm accident rate.

To provide trainees with sufficient information to pass a written examination.

And to provide trainees an opportunity to demonstrate their ability to pass a safe tractor driving examination.
Youth who are under age 14 may take the course with the instructor's permission, however they must be 14 to receive a Certificate of Training.

2019 Schedule of H.O.T. Training Sessions

Slide ShowsTractor Safety Slide Show
Machinery Safety Slide Show

Fair Labor Standards Act

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) as amended, sets labor standards for children younger than 16 years of age. The FLSA covers minimum wages, work limits, maximum hours of work and prohibited hazardous tasks. Child labor provisions of this Act are designed to protect the educational opportunities of minors and prohibit their employment in conditions that could harm their health or well-being. Child labor provisions of the Act apply to the employment of all children, migrant as well as local resident in any labor, with or without pay, the exteption being parents or guardians employing their own children. Fines for child labor violations can be up to $10,000.

Hazardous Occupation Orders for Agriculture

The Hazardous Occupations Order for Agriculture (HOOA) applies to the Fair Labor Standards Act for children under the age of 16 years employed by someone other than parents or guardians. The HOOA does not apply to children under 16 years of age employed "by their parents, or by persons standing in the place of their parents on farms owned or operated by such parents or persons."

The HOOA restricts minors under 16 years of age from the following 11 (eleven) tasks:

  • Operating a tractor over 20 horsepower*
  • Operating a variety of farm machinery* -- 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, or the unloading mechanism of a nongravity-type self-unloading wagon or trailer; power post-hole digger, power post driver, nonwalking-type rotary tiller.
  • Operating the following machines: Trencher or earthmoving equipment; fork lift; potato combine; power-driven circular, band, or chain saw.
  • Working in a yard with certain animals: Working on a farm in a yard pen, or stall occupied by a -- bull, boar, or stud horse maintained for breeding purposes; or sow with suckling pigs or a cow with a newborn calf.
  • Harvesting timber
  • Working on a ladder over 20 feet
  • Driving a vehicle with passengers or riding on a tractor
  • Working in confinement buildings under certain circumstances
  • Handling or applying agricultural chemicals
  • Handling or using a blasting agent
  • Using anhydrous ammonia

* Listed items with an asterisk (*) indicate that minors age 14 and 15, who hold certificates of completion of their tractor and/or machinery operation program may work in the occupations for which they have been trained. Farmers employing minors who have completed this program must keep a copy of the certificates of completion on file with the minor's records.

Occupational Safety and Health Act

The 1970 Occupational Safety and Health Act created the occupational Safety and Health Administration which is responsible for overseeing workplace safety and health. All agricultural operations of one or more workers engaged in a business that affects interstate commerce must comply with OSHA regulations except 1) farm operations employing their own family members, and 2) farm operations which have ten (10) or fewer employees during the previous 12 months and do not maintain a migrant labor camp.