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Here in the south tractors making their way down old country roads is a common sight. Farming remains an important part of life for many in the carolinas. But, no matter how familiar, there are still unique risks associated with them.

These risks are now all too well understood by William Frank Lynn, who collided with a tractor hauling hay after dusk this past Friday in Caswell County. Sadly the driver of the tractor, Joan McKinney, did not survive the collision. She had all the proper lights and reflectors on her tractor, but the stacked hay obscured them. The trailer had no such lights.

Tragic as this accident may be, it is an uneasy reminder to understand the unique dangers that come with different types of vehicles. Regulations and restrictions can seem burdensome at times, but they serve a purpose. Simple mistakes like overlooking the fact that your reflectors can’t be seen with a large stack of hay, can have lasting consequences.

The late Ms. McKinney wasn’t the only one who failed to follow appropriate safety measures that night. the other driver, Mr. Lynn, had also been driving without insurance. While insurance wouldn’t be able to bring back Ms. McKinney, it could have at least helped her family pay for their lost equipment, and funeral expenses, not to mention Mr. Lynn’s truck.

Hearing of accidents like these is one of the most frustrating things for me. It is so unfortunate that such simple things could have prevented, or at least severely lessened the seriousness of this situation. I only hope that people can learn to take that extra bit of time to check the condition of their vehicle, and keep themselves safe.

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