With winter’s chill finally — finally! — done for the season, the bright green of spring starts to take over lawns and alongside rural roads. All of which means motorists will share those roads with large farm equipment during the coming weeks.
Farmers face a relatively tight window of time to get their corn crop in. Large tractors and planters will be moving along at all times of the day and evening. Most farmers try to be considerate of other motorists and pull over when they’re able to allow faster traffic to pass. But there can be times when a line of vehicles forms behind a lumbering tractor pulling a planter or cultivator. That’s when patience can be key.
Spring planting season is a bit easier for other motorists to manage because tall corn doesn’t hinder sight lines at intersections. But that doesn’t mean planting time is without hazards. And, as long as the weather holds, farmers could be out and about as late as mid June putting this year’s crop in the ground.
Illinois State Police ask drivers to stay alert during this time of the year. That means focusing on the task of driving and not a cell phone or some other device.
Other vehicles should pass farm equipment with caution, and always slow down.
Most important, if motorists can’t see the driver of the farm equipment, then he or she can’t see you.
We all have someplace to be in a hurry, but find the brake when you come upon farmers going about their business on roads in Vermilion County and the surrounding area. Taking a few minutes to keep everyone safe might be a bit of an aggravation, but it’s far better than the alternative.