August 2018 - Velcourt

Company








Incident:

Whilst cutting spring triticale whole crop. Flints from the forager caused the stubble to catch fire several times. The Weather was very hot and the ground very dry.

Follow up:

A slurry tanker was used to extinguish the fires and the field was cultivated straight away


Incident:

On the 25th July, one of Velcourt’s farms suffered a large field fire (approx. 12ha). A local contractor was baling the spring barley straw when his driver noticed the baler was smoking, straight away he drove straight off the field onto a grass area (as instructed) but unfortunately he had already dropped a bale that was alight. This ignited the stubble and with a strong wind this spread into the next field of standing wheat. The baler man was equipped with fire extinguishers to try put his baler out, but as the farm staff were combining on another farm they had their water bowser and own firefighting kit with the combine in that field. A fire break was created with the 3 bed ridger cultivator.

Follow up:

A huge amount was learnt from the incident; mainly that the most effective measure to stop the fire spreading was the big tractor and cultivator. As a result they now have the cultivator in the field with the combine ready to react quickly if needed. It is believed the fire started by a jammed flint in the front of the baler, the contractor has been asked for his men to be more aware of this in the future. After the incident we stopped anymore baling until they had some rain, which they have now had. All men have been reminded of the importance of noticing the danger signs of fire early and not to delay calling the emergency services.


Incident:

A diesel leak was noticed when fuelling one of the farms combines in the morning. Investigation found a hole melted in the right hand tank behind a dish shaped plate that clamps the tank in place (the rear most of two) the void behind the plate had a build-up of chaff but no obvious source of ignition.

It is now thought that the belt that runs behind the tank had been rubbing on the combine chassis causing small amount of hot rubber to come off the belt and be a possible cause for ignition. Pulleys are correctly tensioned ant everything appears to be correctly aligned so no explanation as to why the belt is rubbing as yet. Page 2 of 5 02 August 2018

Follow up:

Inspection of the sister combine showed no evidence of the same thing happening. Plates will be regularly removed and inspected, and chaff cleared out.


Incident:

A tractor and trailer pulled out from a field onto a main road as a car came speeding around a corner, the tractor front tyre caught the wing mirror and door of the car.

Follow up:

Extreme care and caution must be taken. At no time should a risk be taken.


Incident:

Whilst combining wheat, the relief combine driver was about to cut the second breed off the headland. The header trailer had been left on the headland when the field was started. The driver turned to go back in and reversed to straighten up. He saw the trailer in the mirrors and thought he was missing it and when he realised he wasn’t, attempted to stop the combine but couldn’t stop quickly enough. He hit the trailer with the straw chopper of the combine resulting in significant damage to the disc and the sub frame of the straw chopper.

Follow up:

Combine drivers reminded to check all surrounds before reversing, ensure mirrors are clean and to use the reversing camera. Trailer drivers are instructed not to leave the header trailers in areas of potential heavy traffic. Management to be responsive to signs of tiredness as harvest progress’s.


For information:

A mechanic came to do some repairs to the combine mentioned in the incident above, it had been thoroughly blown down that morning but smoke could be seen coming come from under the rear hood. Smouldering chaff on other areas on the combine was noticed and the fire brigade was called, they extinguished the fire but had to be called out again when the fire reignited. It is believed that some chaff had ignited from the turbo and dropped onto further chaff on the chassis and under the rear hood where it is believed the fire started highlighting again the issue of burning chaff and hard to access areas of farm machinery.


Incident:

Whilst unloading straw from a lorry and traveling across the farm yard the loader suddenly started to lean to one side. The operator stopped immediately and dropped the loader with straw to the floor to prevent any damage to the cab. Once safely out it was evident that both brackets on the tractor had failed.

Follow up: Page 3 of 5 02 August 2018

This was a mechanical failure and has been raised immediately with CNH. However it serves as a timely reminder that full daily checks, in detail (which had been done in this case) should be carried out prior to use of any lifting equipment.


Incident:

A combine was in operation when it suddenly, without warning shut down. The driver inspected the engine to find a fire had started in the wiring loom.

Follow Up:

The fire is believed to have started due to an electoral fault, but this was not helped by the dusty conditions


Incident:

A harvest casual was attending to a combine fire and went to climb down off the combine and slipped off the track, due to the powder from the fire extinguisher used. He landed awkwardly on the dry ground, causing a badly twisted knee and ankle.

Follow Up:

Combine to be cleaned off every 4 – 5 hours. In emergencies staff are to make sure they are not putting themselves or others at risk of injury by working on a slippery platform.


Incident:

A bearing collapsed on the main belt drive on the trunking of a 2018 Claas Lexion 780, which caused a small fire.


Incident:

A combine driver spotted swath behind the machine (New Holland CR9.80 in its third season) was on fire, the operator could not contain the fire so the fire brigade were called and they managed to extinguish the fire. The bearings on the idler pulley on the main drive belt had collapsed resulting in metal on metal contact and sparks.


Incident:

A harvest casual was moving the combine header when the header trailer became detached from the tractor. The pickup hitch had not been securely latched.

Follow up:

Despite the operation of pickup hitches being covered in the pre harvest induction, a tool box talk will be held to reiterate the process.


Incident:

Whilst cutting ditch sides the driver got too close to the top of the bank, the tractor started to slide into the ditch. The bank collapsed while the driver and AFM were deciding how to deal Page 4 of 5 02 August 2018

with the situation causing the tractor to slide into the dyke coming to rest on its side on the opposite bank.

Follow up:

All operators are reminded to keep a safe distance away from the ditch tops whilst mowing and to have the mower side arm fully extended and also of the correct emergency procedure if the vehicle does overturn. The local CNH dealer will be inspecting the tractor to ensure there is no structural damage to the cab safety frame.


Incident:

Whilst transferring the control panels and cabling on a stand in tractor a member of staff climbed up the rear linking to gain access to the back of the cab. On descending he held onto the top link, which was in its holder, to lower himself to the ground. The top link came out of its holder and the staff member fell to the floor.

Follow up:

On further inspection the bracket was slightly bent, meaning the top link handle could not be fully locked into the holder. Staff reminded to take care when climbing on machinery.


Incident:

Our Tractor and implement traveling on the road past a car on a sharp corner and the implement on the back came into contact with the wing mirror of the car. No damage to the implement. Damage to the wing mirror plus a scratch in the paint work on the door panel.

Follow up:

Care to be taken when traveling along narrow roads especially with carrying implements on the back. Moderate the speed so that there is time to pull over if required.


Incident:

Whilst stubble raking a field a spark from striking a flint caused the stubble / chopped straw to catch fire. A spark from the fire also ignited the chaff that had built up underneath the cab of the tractor and quickly took hold. The fire brigade where called and they contained the fire along with the help of a cultivated fire break.

Follow up:

Care to be taken when working in stubble fields in hot, dry, windy conditions. Fire extinguishers on tractors to be recharged ASAP and checked annually.


Incident:

A CR9.80 combine caught fire below the engine bay. The source of the fire was the wiring loom which then caught the chaff alight.

Follow up: Page 5 of 5 02 August 2018

The fire could have been a lot worse, had the operator not blown the combine down fully before the days use and an additional fire extinguisher had been fitted by the engine bay was available very quickly to put the fire out.


Incident:

A hydraulic pipe burst near hot components in a JCB 536-70 telehandler whilst working in dusty conditions. The machine caught alight causing extensive damage.

Follow up:

Checks under and to the side of the main boom around the hydraulic pipes for build ups must be made for dust or grain and blow out, particularly when working in extremely dusty environments.


Incident:

A short in the wiring loom on a Case Axial Flow 9240 combine in the engine compartment caused settled dust and straw to catch alight.

Follow up:

This machine had a full blow down with a compressor at 9am followed by a blow down with the on-board airline before entering the field in which the fire occurred. Nothing more could have been done to prevent this incident from happening.