Dear Aggie

Question and Answer for October 13th: 

Getting stuck behind a tractor can be frustrating when I’m in a hurry. Why are there so many pieces of large equipment on the roads recently?

Front porch pumpkins and corn stalks are the closest thing some folks get to a farm field in the fall. Sometimes the field work presents itself in the form of tractors and trucks on the road. As harvest progresses, the clock begins to countdown until fields are inaccessible for the winter months prompting urgency on the farmer’s part to get the harvest in, ground worked, and the nutrients applied. Although this process can be an inconvenience to the other motorists, I urge you to play it safe on the roadways. SMV (slow moving vehicle) signs are fastened to the rear of tractors and implements, these bright orange and red signs mean the equipment ahead is moving at a speed slower than traffic and caution should be taken. On a related note, due to the size of machinery, always take care as you move to pass as equipment can still take up part of the left lane even if they don’t mean to. Please take care going over hills and around turns as you never know when a farmer is pulling out to the road to begin their long ride home from their “office” too. As you drive home, please watch out for harvest traffic as it is temporary and everyone deserves to go home safe.

Question answered by Jake Ledoux, Dairy and Livestock Educator with Cornell Cooperative Extension of Jefferson County. Contact him at 315-788-8450 or


Catherine Moore
Agriculture, Natural Resources & Fort Drum Issue Leader
(315) 788-8450 ext. 236

Last updated October 12, 2018