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Plea To Motorists: Take Care On Gypsy Day

30 May 2003

Plea To Motorists: Take Care On Gypsy Day

Motorists are asked to take care and show patience on rural roads this week, said Dean Bailey, Chair of Federated Farmers of New Zealand's Sharemilkers Section.

The first of June is gypsy day for the dairy industry, when sharemilkers move their family, belongings, farm equipment and herd from their old farm to their new one.

"I expect gypsy day to be a busier time on the roads this year than in previous years, as there are signs of more movement in the sharemilking industry -- which is a welcome trend," Mr Bailey said.

"Feedback from the regional chairs of the Sharemilkers Section suggests that there is a greater number of sharemilking jobs on offer, which means more are taking the opportunity to trade up to a larger farm." The majority of sharemilkers will be moving to farms relatively close to their current employers, though some might travel long distances.

"Motorists need to be aware of sharemilkers and their herds when driving on country roads. Sharemilkers are bound by their contract to be at one farm on 31 May and at another farm on 1 June so they have no choice but to be on our roads at this time."

Mr Bailey said that most motorists are reasonable and take a common sense approach. Delays are unlikely for the majority of rural motorists but some can expect minor hold-ups and should plan their trip accordingly.

"Sharemilkers also need to consider motorists in their planning for the day," he said.

He also reminded sharemilkers they must plan ahead to ensure services were set up at their new farm and that legal and bank documents were in place.

"Sharemilkers must tie up all the loose ends with their current farm owners and make sure they have sought advice on any outstanding questions of interpretation in their current agreements or in starting off new ones. Federated Farmers financial members seeking advice in this area should contact the Federation's Employment team on 0800 FARMING (0800 327 646)."


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