(WJET/WFXP/YourErie.com) – Pennsylvania State Police, PennDOT and state lawmakers joined the Erie County Agricultural Bureau on April 22 to discuss rural road safety for drivers as the agricultural season begins.
“The winter was long, it was snowy. It’s spring now and we’re just trying to make people aware that there will be farm equipment on the roads again,” said Mark Troyer, owner of Troyer Farms.
Private Andrew Hacke, community services officer with the Pennsylvania State Police’s E Troop, shared a tip that will help drivers know when to reduce their speed.
“If you see the orange triangle on this vehicle, it’s a slow moving vehicle sign. It is intended to be on all vehicles that travel at 25 mph or less that are on the roads. If you are traveling on the roadway and you see a tractor or see this sign on the roadway, know how to start slowing down each time in advance,” said Troop Andrew Hacke, Community Services Officer for E Erie Troop. .
Troyer explained how drivers can be helpful to working farmers.
“We ask you to slow down a bit and give us some space. We will try to stay off the road as much as we can. When you see a good opportunity to pass, do it absolutely safely. We’re not trying to hold you back,” Troyer said.
Private Hacke shared what drivers should and shouldn’t do when encountering farm equipment on the roads.
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“You want to make sure that if you’re going to overtake, you’re in an overtaking zone. You want to make sure you’re not doing it at the top of a hill or on the curve of a bend. You want to be sure you have a clear line of sight so you can do it safely,” Private Hacke said.
Farmers are asking drivers to be patient with them on the roads as the season progresses.