Farm group pleas for safety with farm implements on the road during harvest
(9/19/2019) - Harvest season is near, meaning motorists will have to share the road with farm implements more often.
The Michigan Soybean Association is asking drivers and farmers to take extra precautions behind the wheel and avoid tragic crashes that are more common in the fall.
The group says 53 people were injured and two died in crashes with farm equipment last year.
“Soybean harvest is just around the corner and we are urging drivers to watch for slow-moving farm equipment,” said Executive Director Janna Fritz of the soybean association and Michigan Soybean Promotion Committee. “This year, soybean farmers may have a smaller window of opportunity to harvest their crop, meaning many may put in long hours working well into the night or starting early in the morning."
She reminded farmers to make sure their lights, flashers and signals all are in working order while ensuring their slow-moving vehicle placard is visible to motorists.
Drivers should stay alert and avoid distractions so they see slow moving equipment in time. Fritz said drivers need to slow down and avoid tailgating tractors and farm implements.
“Distracted driving is quickly becoming a leading cause of traffic crashes and fatalities,” she said. “Farm equipment doesn’t move very fast, so drivers can approach them quickly, especially if they’re not paying close attention."