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The country roads of Minnesota can be scenic short cuts across the state, but, with spring planting going on we know that farm equipment is back on the road. Sure, it can be slow and bothersome for the amount of road the vehicles take up, but the reality is that the farmers are working.

Over time we’ve represented a number of people who have been in collisions involving farm equipment. Rarely are the effects minimal. Last week, there was a fatality as a result of a car/tractor crash in the Rochester area and a couple who died in North Dakota. In 2007, five people died and 84 were injured in accidents with farm vehicles. In 2006, two people died and 62 were injured.

The key is to slow down and keep a good look out.

Safety hints

Some safety hints from the Department of Public Safety:

• Give farm vehicles and hauling trailers more space and remember that they normally travel more slowly.

• The leading cause of crashes is improper or unsafe passing. Large farm equipment is hard to see around, especially on two-lane roads.

• Watch for debris falling from the vehicles. If there is debris, it’s safer to brake or drive through it than steer into oncoming traffic or go off the road.

• Most crashes involving farm vehicles occur in the harvesting months of September, October and November.

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