S.H.M. Aikins and J.B. Kyere
Tractors are costly machines and hence it is important that they are operated by well-trained operators. A survey of 61 agricultural tractor operators at Ejura, Ghana was conducted to identify their personal profile, and to assess their background training in tractor operation and maintenance. The mean age of the tractor operators was 35 with a standard deviation of 9 years. About 47.5% of the tractor operators were illiterate while 37.7% had between one and six years of primary school education. About 36.1% of the tractor operators had no valid driving licence while 31.1% had the agricultural and road construction equipment licence. The remaining 32.8% of the tractor operators had vehicle driving licences of various grades. The responses to the survey show that 96.7% of the tractor operators learnt how to operate the tractor from other tractor operators rather than from a formal tractor operation training school. Survey responses indicate that 78.7% of the operators do not have access to the tractor operator’s manual, or keep records of tractor operation, maintenance and repairs. Additionally, the results show that 67.2% of the operators did not know their tractor rear tyre inflation pressures. Furthermore, 96.7% of the operators did not follow tractor manufacturer’s recommendations in the maintenance and repair of their tractors. Survey results also indicate that all the tractor operators who participated in this study can correctly identify the appropriate soil condition before ploughing. The study draws attention to seriously consider providing quality training to tractor operators at Ejura.
Published Date: 2012-06-06;