Farm Drivers Urged To Take Extra Care Following Road Incident

Drivers of agricultural machinery have been urged, alongside all other road-users, to take extra care on rural Irish roads while the busy summer season lasts.

Image source Cavan Monaghan Garda Division

Image source Cavan Monaghan Garda Division

This follows an incident earlier this month when a silage wagon overturned in Co. Cavan, according to members of An Garda Síochána.

Fortunately, no one was injured in the accident.

In a statement on the matter on social media, Gardaí based in Cavan said:

“This road traffic collision occurred recently in the Bailieboro district.

We want to take this opportunity to appeal to drivers of agricultural vehicles and all other road users to be extra careful during the busy summer months, which is harvesting time.

“Thankfully, on this occasion nobody was injured,” the Garda statement added.

‘Expect The Unexpected’

Earlier this month, the Office of Emergency Planning (OEP) offered advice for agricultural machinery operators and road users in general for this time of year.

“At this time of year, there will be an increase in the number of agricultural vehicles using the road.

Image source Cavan Monaghan Garda Division

Image source Cavan Monaghan Garda Division

If stuck behind a tractor, be patient and don’t be tempted into any foolish or rash overtaking.

“Always be on the look-out for farm machinery leaving fields and farmyards.

“Farmers need to be safety-conscious too,” it was added.

“If the traffic is building up behind, keep left where safe to allow others to pass safely,” the office warned.

The OEP also reminded drivers of agricultural vehicles to be mindful of the following:

  • Wash down wheels regularly to avoid carrying mud and stones onto the public road;
  • Be particularly careful when transporting material such as silage, slurry, sand and gravel so that it does not spill on the road and pose a road safety risk;
  • Not to load/overload trailers so as to cause them to be unstable on the road;
  • Look out for low bridges, overhanging trees, overhead cables and uneven road surfaces which could cause the load to shift and possibly overturn;
  • The driving mirror must always provide an adequate view of the road and all agricultural vehicles must have proper working brakes on both tractor and trailer units. All vehicles must be fitted with lights, reflectors and indicators; and
  • Large farming vehicles should consider using an escort vehicle to warn other road users and ensure that tractors are driven at an appropriate speed for the road conditions.

“Slow down and expect the unexpected,” the office concluded.

(Source – Agriland – Sylvester Phelan – 31/08/2020)

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