This is Fire Prevention Week and while the theme this year deals with "Serve Up Fire Safety in the Kitchen" the Cannon Falls Volunteer Fire Department urges farmers to be careful in their fields.

High winds and dry crops can lead to a Harvest fire.  The Cannon Falls Volunteer Fire Department recently posted some tips on their Facebook page to assist KDHL area farmers.

  • When harvesting on windy days, if possible start on the downwind side of the field.  This way, in case a fire does occur, at least the wind will carry it away from the standing crop.
  • Have working fire extinguishers mounted on equipment and ensure everyone knows how to use them.  Ideally you should have on in the cab and one that is accessible from the ground.
  • Check exposed wiring and fuel/hydraulic lines for damage, wear and deterioration.  Remove crop residue, dust, debris, dirt and excess lubricant around all heat sources regularly.
  • Allow engine to cool before refueling.
  • Walk around machinery and watch, listen and smell to make sure things  are working properly.
  • Be careful when using low clearance vehicles in fields, as exhaust pipes and catalytic converters can ignite dry grass or stubble.  Park on field edges or in places where they won't ignite dry crop residue.
  • Carry a cell phone or radio to report emergencies.  Make sure to know directions to the field.
  • If a fire does occur, always remember that your personal safety is the most important thing.  Don't put yourself or others in any unnecessary risk.  Always call 911 as soon as you notice a fire.

 

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