Spring Risk Mitigation on the Farm

Identify measures you can take to mitigate risk and ways to ensure you are prepared for a quick and effective response should a disaster or emergency strike.


High risk during spring

  • Flood or flash flood

  • Grass fires

  • Spring snowstorm

  • Building or structure collapse

  • Plow wind, hurricane, tornado

  • Thunderstorm – lightning strikes

  • Thin ice on dugout, slough or other water

Other risks

  • Disease outbreak

  • Drought

  • Hazardous material spill or release

  • Explosion

  • Building fire

  • Transportation incident

  • Building or structure collapse

  • Power outage

  • Water contamination

  • Uncared for or neglected domestic animals

  • Loose livestock

  • Ill or hungry wildlife

Response Preparation

  • Have fire extinguishers available and up to date in all barns and buildings.

  • Clear water should be accessible at all barns to allow for fighting fires.

  • Current animal inventory numbers.

  • Ensure animals have access to higher and/or open ground in case of high water or fire.

  • Test emergency generator if you have one.

  • Inspect and make any repairs to fences, gates and livestock trailers that may be needed.

  • Have temporary fencing or penning available and supplies to fix fence.

Risk Mitigation Checklist

  • Keep grass mowed around all buildings.

  • Inspect any fences for winter damage before putting animals out on pasture.

  • Make sure all gates are in good repair and functioning.

  • Limit any burning activity, including burn barrels to damp and windless days.

  • Cut down any at risk trees that died or became weakened over the winter.

  • Clean out all culverts to allow for unobstructed flow of water.

  • Monitor water levels around your farm and at nearby water sources.

  • Check all feed sources for mold and other damage.

  • Inspect all wiring in barns and remove dust and cobwebs from junction areas.

  • Clean any equipment or junk that can become flying projectiles.

  • Vaccinate all animals for disease prevention following veterinarian updates.

  • Clean out all barns, stalls, corrals, etc.

  • Ensure all hazardous material is properly stored.

  • Eliminate as many flammables as possible from area.

  • Hay, straw or manure piles may self-combust and cause a fire, never store close to structures or buildings.

Recent Posts

See All

Potomac Horse Fever Webinar

Webinar presented on May 18, 2021 by Drs. Ashley Whitehead (UCVM) and Luis Arroyo (OVC) provided participants with an update on Potomac Horse Fever (PHF) in Canada, with information on pathogenesis, d

Biosecurity on your Equine Property

Biosecurity is not one-size-fits-all. Biosecurity plans should be customized for each property to take into account all aspects that can affect horse health. Below are links to resources that can help

Good deeds: Feeding Wild Horses

What makes a deed good? Is it good intentions or is it good results? Or are both elements required for a deed to qualify as good? When it comes to the wildies (loose, wild and feral horses), some peop