Keeping the Roads Safe During Planting Season: 5 Tips for Farm Operator Liability

By Shelley Swearingen #yourlandwoman | May 11, 2020


It’s that time of year again. Cars and agricultural machinery are sharing roads. It is everyone’s job to drive safely and courteously. With that in mind, we’ve created a short list of items for farm operators to review this Spring.


  1. Perform regular and proper maintenance on vehicles & equipment
  • Have vehicles and equipment inspected by an external source
  • Keep adequate records


  1. Know employees’ driving history
  • Are your employees trained to operate the machinery?
  • If the equipment or item being transported requires certification, ensure that the employee is current on training or requirements. For example, does the truck require a CDL license?
  • Your employees/drivers are representing you and your agribusiness. Remind them of this often.
  • Check references
  • Discuss and enforce a zero-tolerance drug and alcohol policy


  1. Discuss driving safety with employees
  • Do your employees know how to operate the machinery on narrow roads?
    • Remind drivers to be courteous to smaller vehicles on the road.
  • Do your employees know the weight of the machinery they are operating?
    • Older bridges may not be able to support the weight of your equipment.
  • Are your employees familiar with the area?
    • Are there certain roads with significant unnoticeable drop offs? This could cause a large piece of machinery to roll if the driver is not careful.
  • Stress the importance of driving with caution
    • Farmers work long hours. This can lead to fatigue and mental fog.
  • Use slow-moving vehicle signs when necessary


  1. Become familiar with your insurance policy
  • Get to know your insurance agent. Be honest and forthright with information – this allows him/her to help you select the best coverage.


  1. Protect your personal assets
  • Incorporate your operations to limit liability exposure.
  • If your operation becomes entangled in litigation, this could protect you from losing more than you need to and keeping your family out of a lawsuit.


Safety is at the forefront of any manager’s mind, especially so in the agricultural world. Use these tips to help safeguard your agribusiness and farmland operation to protect yourself from legal implications.


Geswein Farm and Land values keeping ourselves & the community informed on farm safety and well-being. We have over 40 years of experience helping farmers, ranchers, and families sell land and/or expand operation through acquiring more parcels. Need help finding a tenant to work your ground? We can help with that, too.


Call or Text Johnny Klemme at 765.427.1619 to start a conversation.

From Land Values & Management to farm real estate sales & valuations, we can help.


Information has been gathered from sources deemed reliable but not guaranteed and is subject to change without notice. The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice; instead, all information, content, and materials available on this site are for general informational purposes only.




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