Ag News

Fire authorities warning about operating Farm Machinery, Equipment and Vehicles

  • By: Farm Tender "Prime"
  • Jan 05, 2018

It's your responsibility to make sure you don't start a fire

   * On hot, dry days, exercise extreme caution before harvesting, grinding, welding, slashing or mowing
   * Avoid driving vehicles and motorbikes through dry grass or crop - the risk from the hot exhaust system is high. Driving vehicles with catalytic converters through dry grass and crops is particularly hazardous
   * Take regular breaks
   * Make it part of your routine to check for straw or grass build-up, and hot bearings
   * Check machinery to ensure that spark arrestors are maintained.

The most common cause of harvester fires is material collecting on hot engine components such as the manifold, exhaust and turbocharger.

The key to avoiding harvester fires is diligence in clean-down and inspection. Postpone paddock work during the highest fire-risk periods.

Restrictions during the Fire Danger Period
Vehicles and motorbikes propelled with an internal combustion engine must not contact any type of vegetation unless they are fitted with a system that takes all of the exhaust from the engine through a silencing device.

Machinery incorporating a heat engine in contact with, or within nine metres of crop, grass, stubble, weeds, undergrowth or other vegetation must be:
   * Free from faults and mechanical defects that could cause an outbreak of fire
   * Fitted with an approved spark arrester
   * Carry fire suppression equipment: this can be a knapsack spray pump or water fire extinguisher. It must be in working order, fully charged with water and have a minimum capacity of nine litres

Tractors fitted with a turbocharger or an exhaust-aspirated aircleaner do not require a spark arrestor.

Cutting, welding and grinding ...
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