Planting Season 2024: Sharing the Road With Farm Vehicles

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Throughout the year, we must often share the pubic roadway with other motor vehicle operators, including passenger vehicles and large commercial vehicles. We may even regularly pass tractor operators using rotary mowers to maintain the vegetation along the perimeter of public roadways. However, you may have recently noticed more farm vehicles along your daily commute.

Planting season through harvest, we find ourselves sharing the road more frequently with farm vehicles tractors, sprayers, harvesters, and other types of oversized agricultural equipment. NC is diverse in terms of geography and agricultural production, which means planting and harvest seasons differ depending where you are in the state and which commodities are grown in your area. Farm vehicles are operated by people who are responsible for growing the food we eat, the clothes we wear, and the materials we use in our homes and businesses everyday. Let’s make sure they arrive to their destinations safely with a few best practices in roadway safety.

  • Keep an eye out for slow-moving vehicle (SMV) signs
  • Slow down when agricultural equipment enters the roadway
  • Be aware that farm vehicles have major blind spots directly in front, behind, and other places around the farm vehicle depending on the equipment type and attached implements
  • Maintain a two-car-length distance away from farm vehicles
  • Be cautious of agricultural equipment making wide left-turns

For more information, visit our partner resources such as the

NC State Extension Homegrown Series or NC Farm Bureau’s Roadway Safety Resources.

Article contributed Alyssa Spence, Ed.D., Associate Director, NC Agromedicine Institute.