Minnesota Department of Transportation

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April 24, 2024

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MnDOT asks motorists, farm equipment operators to safely share the road during planting season

ROCHESTER, Minn. — Motorists traveling on Minnesota roads this spring should watch for large farm equipment moving to and from the fields during planting season, according to the Minnesota Department of Transportation. 

Since 2020, there were 446 crashes involving farm equipment in Minnesota, resulting in eight deaths and 171 injuries. Inattentive driving and speed were the biggest contributing factors in those crashes.
“Farmers need our highways to access fields statewide, so motorists should prepare to encounter slow-moving farm vehicles; especially on rural, two-lane roads,” said Brian Sorenson, state traffic engineer. 
Farm equipment is large and heavy, making it hard for operators to accelerate, slow down and stop. The equipment also makes wide turns and sometimes crosses over the center line. In addition, farm vehicles can create large blind spots, making it difficult for operators to see approaching vehicles. 
Motorists should:

  • Slow down and use caution when approaching farm equipment
  • Watch for debris dropped by farm equipment 
  • Drive with headlights on at all times
  • Wait for a safe place to pass

Farm equipment operators should:

  • Use lights and flashers to make equipment more visible
  • Use slow-moving vehicle emblems on equipment traveling less than 30 mph
  • Consider using a follow vehicle when moving equipment, especially at night