Backing a tractor into a steel upright, another vehicle or – heaven forbid – another person, is one of those things that can happen on even the most well-run farm.

But Kent firm Brigade Electronics has just launched what’s thought to be the first radar obstacle detection system for agriculture. It aims to improves safety by giving drivers clear warnings of people or obstructions in the way of manoeuvring machinery.

Brigade’s new high-tech Backsense radar system divides any chosen detection area into five zones and then gives a visual and audible warning when objects enter the hazard area.

See also: Radar system could make tractors and farms safer

A unit in the cab uses five LEDs corresponding to the five distance zones around the vehicle. A warning buzzer with an adjustable sound level of 65-90dB means you’ll hear it in even the noisiest working environment. The sensor is apparently impervious to water, dust and mud.

Four new Backsense models are available. The top model is fully programmable and gives users a bespoke detection area from 3-30m in length and a width between 2m and 10m.

The five detection zones can be tailored to suit the vehicle and its surroundings. So parts of the machine that would otherwise set off the detector can be programmed out using the PC-based software provided.

There are also three lower-cost models with fixed detection areas of 3m, 4.5m and 6m in length.

The equipment is sold through Brigade’s dealer network. Units with fixed radar lengths cost from £650-750. For the top-of-the-range programmable unit, Brigade suggests you contact your nearest dealer.