Drivers, Tractors Share the Road as Planting Gets Underway


Planting season is just around the corner for Nebraska farmers, and that means more large equipment will be sharing the road.

Farmer Greg Greving says planting season will be a race to the fields once it gets underway.

"There's a lot of farmers here in central Nebraska that are just waiting for the green light to go, and once that happens, it's going to be the Corn and Bean Planting 500, if you will," says Greving.

The speed is only in terms of sowing seeds in the ground, because when that big equipment gets on Nebraska roads, it can only go about 20 miles per hour where other drivers may be traveling 50-60 mph.

"We ourselves try to stay off the paved roads as much as possible, and I know my neighbors and friends do the same thing, but there are some times that we do have to get on there," says Greving.

Local law enforcement say the extra tractor traffic means drivers should slow down and be willing to wait for a safe chance to pass.

"But remember there are still mile markers they have to go around and things like that so even if they're trying to get clear over to the right, there may be times that they're still taking up the majority of that lane that they're in," says Merrick County Sheriff Kevin Campbell.

It's up to farmers to be sure flashers are working and slow moving vehicle signs are on their equipment, but they say accidents are prevented when all drivers keep safety in mind.

"We only have a certain amount of time to do this, and we don't like it when we're on the road in our pickup and have to wait on a tractor or whatever, so just be patient and we'll be out of your way in a minute," says Greving.

One more tip for a safe planting season – experts say seat belt use isn't just for passenger vehicles, they say farmers should be sure and buckle up in tractors that have them too.

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