To view the PSA Video click here.
As spring starts and temperatures rise farmers across Indiana will begin to plant the states 15 million acres of crops. To keep motorists and farmers safe this planting season, several state agencies have partnered together to encourage Hoosiers to be alert, slow down and share the road with farm equipment.
According to the most recent data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, farm vehicles other than trucks were involved in 98 crashes across the U.S., with two of those accidents occurring in Indiana.
Indiana State Department of Agriculture Director Bruce Kettler says farmers want to move their equipment as quickly and safely as possible.
While the term “farm equipment” encompasses a wide range of vehicles, the most common types motorists will encounter during planting season include sprayers, tractors pulling planters or tillage equipment and large trucks hauling agricultural products. These vehicles are wide, sometimes taking up most of the roadway, and often travel at speeds no greater than 25 mph.
The following list includes several safety tips for motorists approaching large farm equipment:
- Most farmers will pull over when they are able to let you pass, but it may take time for them to get to a safe place to do so. Be careful and patient when passing.
- Allow plenty of time to get to your destination, be aware of alternate routes and avoid distractions.
- Do not pass within 100 feet of any intersection, railroad grade crossing, bridge, elevation structure, or tunnel.
- Farm equipment is wide, sometimes taking up most of the roadway. Exercise caution when passing.
- Do not tailgate farm vehicles, as they might have to make sudden stops along the road.
- Do not try to pass a slow-moving vehicle on the left without ensuring that the vehicle is not planning a left turn. It may appear that the driver is pulling over for you to pass when it is actually preparing to turn. You will drive right into its path, endangering yourself and the farmer.
The following organizations will be working together to share these safety tips during planting season: Hoosier Ag Today, Indiana Department of Homeland Security, Indiana Department of Transportation, and the Indiana State Police.
Special thanks to Hoosier Ag Today for the public safety announcement.
You can also listen to the PSA by tuning into Hoosier Ag Today radio stations. To find a station broadcasting in your area, click here.