As a driver in a rural community, you may often find yourself sharing the road with large farm equipment. These encounters require a heightened level of caution and awareness to ensure the safety of both yourself and the equipment operators.
Farm equipment tends to be large, slow-moving and incapable of reaching high speeds. Give them the necessary time and space to safely operate their machinery. Remembering these points can enhance safety when you’re driving around these large machines.
Be prepared to encounter farm equipment at any given moment, particularly during planting and harvesting seasons. Watch for warning indicators such as slow-moving vehicle emblems, flashing lights or hand signals from the operator.
Give them space
Maintain a safe following distance. Be aware that the machinery’s noise and size may obstruct the operator’s view of your vehicle. Before attempting to pass, ensure that you have a clear line of sight, and never attempt to overtake farm equipment on curves, hills or in designated no-passing zones.
Pass with care
When it comes to passing, exercise caution. Once you have determined it is safe to do so, signal your intentions and move into the opposite lane as far as safely possible. This approach will provide ample space for both your vehicle and the farm equipment, helping to avoid potential accidents.
Avoid blind spots
Remain conscious of potential blind spots. Operators of farm machinery may struggle to see your vehicle, particularly if it is smaller in size. If you are unable to see the operator in their mirrors, it is likely that they cannot see you either. Maintain a safe distance and adjust your position as needed to ensure you remain visible to the operator at all times.
Farmers provide a valuable service to their communities. Following proper safety practices when you’re driving around them can help to avoid crashes that can lead to serious injuries or deaths. If an injury is caused by the negligence of the equipment operator or another driver, the victim may opt to pursue a claim for compensation.