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Moist spring has farmers in the dark

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A moist spring is causing people to use farm equipment during dark hours in the fall.
A moist spring is causing people to use farm equipment during dark hours in the fall.

Farmers in Illinois may feel like they are losing daylight on this season's harvest.

A recent story from Illinois' State Journal-Register noted that farmers are finding themselves in the fields later this fall because of a spring season that saw a lot of precipitation. Because the harvest is being delayed, people may find that there is more farm equipment on the road during dark hours as the days get shorter.

Garry Niemeyer, a farmer from Auburn Illinois, told the paper that if motorists slowed down a little bit it would make this peculiar harvesting situation a bit easier on everyone.

"Out here in the farming community, there's a lot of nervous tension, because we're probably about one month behind when we'd be harvesting," Niemeyer said.

Along with worrying about other cars, the paper noted that farmers should be prepared for combine fires, which can occur when dry crops build up in farm equipment. Farmers should have fire extinguishers in their machines and should try to get out of fields if their machine experiences a fire.

Last week marked the celebration of National Farm Safety and Health Week. When dealing with farm equipment on the road, a number of organizations noted that motorists should be patient and only pass when it's safe. Farmers should also make sure their vehicles are clearly marked while traveling on the road.

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