(WCSJ Stock Image)

Area agriculture leaders are reminding the public to be cautious around tractors and combines during the harvest season.

We are half way through the 2021 National Farm Safety and Health Week. With harvest underway, more farmers and slow moving vehicles will begin to populate area roadways. To help bring attention to agriculture safety, Victoria Wax with the Kendall Grundy Farm Bureau called into WCSJ with a few safety reminders.

State Senator Patrick Joyce, who represents a portion of Grundy County, is the chair of the State Senate Agriculture Committee. 

“The safety and health of farmers and their farms is so important,” Joyce said. “With this being such a stressful time of year for a farming operation, it’s important that we increase awareness of farming hazards and prepare for emergency situations.”

The latest data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics shows the agriculture sector is still the most dangerous in America. Each year the farming profession sees 573 fatalities, or about 23 deaths per 100,000 workers.

All agricultural vehicles using public roads must display the fluorescent orange Slow Moving Vehicle triangle, while tractors and other self-powered farm vehicles must have proper lighting.

Drivers should remember farm vehicle operators have limited visibility to the rear, and anyone passing these vehicles should use extreme caution.