Slow-Moving Vehicle Description

  • All vehicles that operate at less than 40 mph, including:
    • tractors
    • self-propelled agricultural equipment
    • road construction & maintenance machinery
    • animal-powered vehicles

Peak Months

Expect to see slow-moving most often from late April through mid-October, due to planting and harvesting crops.

Slow Moving Vehicle Emblems

  • Slow-moving Vehicle Emblems (SVE) must be on all vehicles traveling less than 40 mph.
  • The emblems are to be displayed in the middle of the back end of the vehicle 2 to 6 feet above the road.
  • Speed Identification Symbols (SIS) must be on vehicles that travel greater than 25 mph but less than 40 mph.
  • The speed identification symbol identifies the top speed of the vehicle and should be placed next to the emblem.
  • The SMVEs and SISs are to be kept clean and replaced when faded.
  • Each piece of agricultural equipment whether self-propelled or used in combination shall separately display a slow-moving vehicle emblem and speed identification symbol.
  • It is illegal to put SMV emblems on stationary objects - such as:
    • mailboxes
    • driveway posts.

Slow-Moving Vehicle Restrictions

Under NYS Law, self-propelled agricultural equipment can be operated on public roadways after dark and when visibility is reduced to less than 1,000 feet if they meet the following requirements.

The vehicle is equipped with lamps in good working order and are lighted:

  • Head lights: 2 white colored on the front
  • Tail lamps: 1 red colored at the rear and far left as possible
  • Hazard flashers / turn indicators: 2 amber lamps at least 42 inches high; visible from the front and rear.

Tips for Motorists

  • Motorists should:
    • slow down immediately
    • increase following distance
    • be alert and watch for turns
    • drive courteously
    • pass with care
    • be aware that animal-powered vehicles may make unanticipated movements
    • remember that SMVs operators may have poor visibility due to loads and equipment in tow
    • be aware the equipment in tow may sway