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Combine ignites while harvesting soy beans

   The Lewisport Volunteer Fire Department received a call on Friday, October 14. Glenn Moffitt’s John Deere combine had caught fire while he was operating it out in his soybean field on the corner of State Hwy 657 and McIntyre Road in Lewisport. The fire was completely knocked down by Lewisport firefighters and, thankfully, no one was injured. The land owner is Becky Toler.

   Lewisport Fire Chief and EMT Troy Roberts said he was out in the ambulance when the fire station received the call. “There were 3 that came out on the fire engine,” Roberts said. “We took our brush truck and Ranger, our side-by-side out, just in case it had gotten to the field. We had 7 of us out there total. From the time our fire truck got on the scene until I radioed-in that the fire was knocked down was close to 30 minutes.”

   They are not 100 percent sure what caused the fire. “From what we understand,” Chief Roberts said, “it came from the back of the combine so we’re guessing maybe a hydraulic line had been weakened or busted, which would’ve caused it. The whole back end of the combine was pretty much engulfed when we got there. Right after we pulled up, the fire got into the cab of the combine. It’s a good ways out and it took us a minute to get out there, unfortunately.”

   Moffitt was driving the combine through a part of the field that had already been cut and was getting ready to off-load the hopper when another guy (unknown) that was there came up and knocked on his window to let him know that the back of it was on fire. He jumped out and they moved the truck and everything out of the way from it so that nothing else would catch fire.

   “He was driving through a spot that had already been cut so they didn’t lose any soybeans,” Roberts said. “It started to kind of turn toward part of the soybeans that hadn’t been cut yet, but they got it all knocked down and then we got some water on it.”

   Moffitt’s combine was insured and he was talking to his insurance company while they were out there putting out the fire. He still has more crops to get cut down and was working on getting another combine to finish-up.

   Chief Roberts said that because of all the dry weather lately that things like this are almost unavoidable.

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