Farmer digs fire line with his tractor to try to contain the fire

I’ve worked on a farm just about my whole life and every so often a field, the desert, or something else would catch on fire. If it was bad enough we would all hop in tractors with discers (I’ve never actually spelled out ‘discer’ before ha ha but it’s the machine that is being pulled) and start plowing down dirt.

One time the nuclear site’s side of the farm which is a desert was hit by lightning and started on fire and it was REALLY bad really really bad we were at risk of losing countless acres of dry wheat, we called the nuclear site, Hanford, and told them to start putting it out. They were out in full force but still couldn’t contain anything so we switched to their CB radio station and started working with them. I was told to start plowing by the farm’s landing strip and horse stables, arguable the worse part, and laughably not the most dangerous thing they’ve made me do.

So there I am in my John Deere driving as fast as I can through the fire because it had come right up to the field/airport/hanger and all the sudden I look down and dammit my tractor is on fire. I hop out and start furiously shoveling dirt and sand onto the engine to put it out, I’ve seriously never dug so fast with my hands I probably put two or three bucket fulls on that thing in under ten seconds. That went out and the tractor seemed about as happy as ever so I hopped back in.

Anyways we fight the fire until about two or three in the morning, which meant I got to sleep in until seven the next day to go back and move water! Farm work waits for no person!

— onlyeatspotatoes @ Reddit


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  • Travis Poulson

    ” (I’ve never actually spelled out ‘discer’ before ha ha but it’s the machine that is being pulled) and start plowing down dirt.”

    That’s because they’re called discs, not “discers. And he wasn’t “plowing”, he was ploughing. Bloody townies :)

    • Whafe

      We always went out with our discs and did some discing. Where are you, out discing a fire break, and by fuck it is warm out… But the discs are working a treat…..

      • Travis Poulson

        Yes discing not ploughing, I was just being a pedantic prick correcting it. Spent many an hour doing the laps (often at night) with the discs. That period of time in the middle of the night when the eyelids get heavy and you start overlapping by 50%, or even doing the same lap twice!

    • James Stephenson

      The implement is properly called a set of disc harrows. I’ve been there and done that with an extremely top speed limited Track Marshal 90, and my employer’s son damn near set his Deutz Fahr on fire by forgetting to release his handbrake…nice palm-sized blister he had to show for his first attempt to release it too.

      • Travis Poulson

        Correct, but “discs” is commonly the spoken term used. I’ve also seen the effects of a handbrake left on a tractor while driving (no it wasn’t me) could have fried an egg on the back end of the tractor.

  • cows4me

    Some of the machines they have today are straight out of the transformers . The technology is incredible, so is the price.

    • Travis Poulson

      Indeed, as well as all that flash GPS shit the contractors use (and the richer farmers) to avoid spray/cultivation overlap, computers monitoring fuel efficiency etc. Almost need qualifications to operate them these days.