Minnesota Seeing Rise in Farm Equipment Accidents

October 23, 2014

Electric co-ops in Minnesota say they’re seeing more cases of farm machinery hitting poles or overhead lines, causing costly and potentially dangerous scenarios.

Tractor moving plough on the roadThey say the increase in accidents is a result of bigger farm equipment. Federated Rural Electric, based in the southwest part of the state, was impacted last month when a transmission tower was hit by a farmer tilling a field. The damage caused more than 2,000 customers to lose power until a repair crew was dispatched.

A company spokeswoman tells Minnesota Public Radio News that it was the third farm-related accident Federated Rural Electric has seen this fall. She says a farmer wrecked five power poles in a similar incident last spring.

A safety coordinator at Sioux Valley Energy says the co-op typically sees a couple of collisions each month.

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