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 patient.
- Farm equipment is wide, sometimes taking up most of the roadway. Be careful when passing.
- Do not pass if you are in a designated “No Passing Zone” or within 100 feet of any intersection, railroad grade crossing, bridge, elevation structure, or tunnel.
- 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.
- Avoid tailgating, as some farm equipment might have to make sudden stops along the road.
- Allow plenty of time to get to your destination, be aware of alternate routes and avoid distractions.
“Due to the size of our equipment, people will often see us before we see them,” said Zach Cain, a Montgomery County farmer. “It’s important to be patient. Farmers don’t want to hold up traffic, but it can take us some time to find a safe spot to pull over.”
Bruce Kettler, Indiana State Department of Agriculture (ISDA) Director, said that motorists should pay special attention to stationary farm equipment on the side of the road, as there might be farmers working nearby.
“We want to remind Hoosiers to take extra precaution on the roadways this spring,” Kettler said. “Leaving a few minutes early will ensure that everyone reaches their destination safely and in a timely manner.”