Safely sharing the road with farm vehicles

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(ABC 6 News) – With a few recent fatalities reported in surrounding communities, it is important to remember safety tips around farming utility vehicles.

During planting season farm vehicles are out and about for several hours a day. Most of the time, they are out in the fields, but they do need to drive on roadways to get to other fields or get home for the night.

“We’re trying to do what we can and do it safe, but it helps if the public is aware of what we’re trying to do,“ Nutrien Ag solutions Facility manager Scott Barnes said.

They don’t usually drive extended distances, usually no more than a couple miles, but it is enough where an accident can ensue.

One local farmer has noticed how much bigger the equipment has gotten.

“They haven’t made the roads a lot bigger, but they have made the equipment a lot bigger.”

Brian Herbst has been farming for 44 years, and has two sons, Adam and Eli, who help him out.

There is one incident that sticks out in his mind.

“We were actually hit once, when we were pulling out on the road with a fuel tank,” Herbst said.

According to Herbst, the other person was texting and driving. Herbst was uninjured, but the driver was transported to the hospital.

Herbst wasn’t completely out of harms way he had a 500 gallon tank of fuel that flew off the truck from the accident. It still could have ended worse.

“It just rolled, so it didn’t break or anything. Thank goodness,” said Herbst.

With many farms in the communities caught up after a slow warm up this year, there may not be as many farm vehicles out on roads the next few months.

If anything, though, that makes it even more important to look out. There is an emblem on the back of them that states they are a slower moving vehicle.

“It’s a triangle. Two-toned orange with red on the outside. That means it’s a slow moving vehicle,” Barnes said.

Come harvest season there will once again be plenty more farm vehicles on the roads again.