In rural communities all across the state, tractors and farm equipment traveling along the roadway are a common sight, particularly during summer harvest months. It is legal for farmers to drive their equipment on public roads, and both farmers and other drivers must take proper precautions to share the roadways, for their own safety and the safety of others.
On Friday, June 26, Governor Kulongoski will sign an important piece of legislation that will improve the safety on rural roads for all Oregonians. HB 2554 provides greater protections for agricultural-related vehicles on Oregon roadways. The bill expands the definition of “vulnerable user of public way” to include any farm tractor or implement of husbandry. Under the new law, careless motorists will face increased penalties for reckless driving around tractors.
“While farmers take safety precautions to ensure their machinery is easily visible, not all situations are met with appropriate caution,” said Barry Bushue, Oregon Farm Bureau President. “HB 2554 provides protections for operators of all farm equipment on Oregon’s roads and reminds us that we all have a responsibility to share the road as we enter the harvest season. We hope this law will remind folks that they should not let eagerness to get where they’re going endanger themselves or operators of farm equipment.”
* Note: “Farm Bureau” is a registered trademark; please capitalize in all cases.
The Oregon Farm Bureau (OFB) is a voluntary, grassroots, nonprofit organization representing the interests of the state’s farmers and ranchers in the public and policymaking arenas. As Oregon’s largest general farm organization, its primary goal is to promote educational improvement, economic opportunity, and social advancement for its members and the farming, ranching, and natural resources industry as a whole. “The voice of Oregon agriculture,” OFB works to find solutions that will benefit all of the state’s agriculture producers.
First established in Oregon in 1919, Farm Bureau is organized in all 36 counties and has more than 8,000 member families that are professionally engaged in agriculture. Barry Bushue, an east Multnomah County berry and nursery stock producer, is OFB’s 15th president.
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