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Serving: MN

Be safe this fall when applying anhydrous

Paula Mohr tractor carrying anhydrous ammonia tank driving down rural road
UNDER 50 DEGREES: Quick reminder — fall application of anhydrous ammonia should happen after average soil temperatures reach 50 degrees F or cooler to help prevent nitrogen loss and protect water quality. Plus, the practice ensures more nitrogen will be available for next season’s crop.
Follow these safety tips offered by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture when applying and transporting NH3.

Many farmers and applicators throughout Minnesota will soon apply anhydrous ammonia (NH3) after harvest.

Even with a rush against time and the weather, safety should never be compromised. Recent accidents involving anhydrous ammonia have proven how dangerous and deadly the chemical can be when not handled properly.

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture offers the following tips to farmers and applicators so they can safely apply anhydrous ammonia:

Always wear appropriate goggles and gloves. Never wear contact lenses.

Emergency water supply. Be sure to have a clean, adequate emergency water supply of at least 5 gallons.

Be cautious with connections. Exercise caution when making connections and disconnections as if lines contain anhydrous ammonia.

When to stand upwind. Stand upwind when connecting, disconnecting, bleeding lines, or transferring NH3.

What to do when taking breaks or disconnecting. Also, close, bleed, disconnect, and secure valves and transfer lines when taking breaks or disconnecting lines, and be sure to handle hose end valves by the valve body.

Equipment position. Position equipment away and downwind from homes, people and livestock.

Maintenance safety. Safety is also key to those maintaining anhydrous ammonia equipment. Never assume NH3 lines are empty, always wear proper protective equipment, and always have access to safety water.

Tank towing. When towing a nurse tank down the road, drive sensibly. Do not go any faster than 30 mph; display a slow-moving vehicle emblem visible from the rear; and be sure the tank is secured to the tractor or truck with two separate, independent chains that supplement the hitch pin or clip.

If an accident or spill occurs, immediately call 911 and then the Minnesota Duty Officer at 800-422-0798 or 651-649-5451.

You can find more safety, storage, and transportation information on the MDA’s website at

As a reminder, fall application of anhydrous ammonia should happen after average soil temperatures reach 50 degrees F or cooler to help prevent nitrogen loss, protect water quality and ensure more nitrogen will be available for next season’s crop.

View the MDA’s interactive map to find the current 6-inch soil temperature and the past week’s history.

Source: Minnesota Department of Agriculture, which is solely responsible for the information provided and is wholly owned by the source. Informa Business Media and all of its subsidiaries are not responsible for any of the content contained in this information asset.



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