MISSOURI STATE HIGHWAY PATROL
a division of the
DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY
Troop B Headquarters - 308 Pine Crest Drive - Macon, Missouri 63552
For further information please contact:
Sergeant Eric F. Brown
September 15, 2017
New Law Affects Driving During Harvest Season
Captain James E. Wilt, commanding officer of Troop B, Macon, would like to make motorists aware of a recent change in law that affects motorists during the upcoming and future harvest seasons. In the past, most agricultural implements were not allowed on the roadway during periods of darkness. With the recent passage of Senate Bill 8, agricultural implements will be allowed to be moved on Missouri roadways for short distances during periods of darkness, if they are equipped with the proper lighting. Agricultural implements operated during the times when lighted lamps are required must be equipped with at least one lighted lamp or lantern exhibiting a white light visible from a distance of 500 feet to the front of the vehicle, and with a lamp or lantern exhibiting a red light visible from a distance of 500 feet to the rear. Those lamps and lanterns should exhibit light to the sides of the such vehicle. “Slow moving vehicle” emblems are still required to be displayed.
This change allows farmers to safely and efficiently harvest their crops. Farming plays a vital role in Missouri’s economy. The following are reminders for safe travel when agriculture equipment is on the roadway during periods of darkness.
* Stay alert for slow moving farm equipment and oversize loads when traveling in farming areas, especially during periods of darkness and where your view is obstructed by hills or curves.
* Be patient when traveling behind slow moving vehicles. Only pass when it is safe and your view is not obstructed by hills or curves.
* Watch for farm vehicles entering and leaving the highway from side roads, driveways, and field entrances.
* Collisions commonly occur when a motorist tries to pass a left-turning farm vehicle. A tractor that appears to be pulling to the right side of the road to let motorists pass, instead may be preparing to make a wide left turn.
Watch the farmer’s hand signals and light signals closely.
* Make sure any farm equipment being driven or towed on Missouri roadways are properly marked with lights and a “slow moving vehicle” emblem.
* Be sure your lights are functioning properly.
* Be sure to clean your lights and reflective warning equipment before entering the roadway so they can be seen easily.
* Drive as far to the right as possible.
* If traffic accumulates behind you on a road where it is difficult to make a safe pass, you should pull off onto the side of the road in a level area, so the vehicles can pass.
* If you are traveling in areas where your vehicle could be obscured by the landscape or darkness, travel with an escort vehicle if possible.
Driving is a full-time job ... for everyone! Distracted drivers are dangerous drivers. Whether you’re driving a vehicle or operating farm machinery, you must pay attention to the roadway, other drivers, and traffic signs.
The only 100 percent survivable traffic crash is the one that never happens. Make sure everyone in the vehicle is properly restrained in a seat belt or child restraint. Every day as we travel on Missouri’s roadways, we trust that every driver on the road is going to obey the speed limit, pay attention, and drive sober.
“Don’t Violate The Trust.”