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View Full Version : Custodian burned to death on Dixie Chopper


BCPHOTO
05-10-2010, 10:33 AM
Custodian at the Carmel Indiana High School, was engulfed in flames while mowing on a Dixie Chopper. Passersby helped extinguish the flames and he was taken to the hospital where he later died.

On another tv news report, a witness said that fuel was spraying out of the mower onto the victim and he was trying to shut it off. They also reported that it was a Dixie.

RIP

http://www.wthr.com/Global/story.asp?S=12430999

MikeKle
05-10-2010, 10:36 AM
Dixie is in bad shape anyway, now there will likely be a lawsuit and they will probably have to payout millions of dollars? I dont think Dixie will be around too much longer! Where is the fuel shut off on these mowers anyway? Mine are real easy to get to.

lotsagrass
05-10-2010, 10:52 AM
Could be as simple as a fuel hose coming loose or cracked open due to age or maybe was rubbing on something and got a hole in it. May be hard to pin this one on Dixie. A lot of operator abuse or neglect in maintenance could very well have been the cause. I would imagine someone would have to show Dixie had a design flaw that allowed this to happen before they'd be on the hook.

BCPHOTO
05-10-2010, 10:56 AM
Dixie is in bad shape anyway, now there will likely be a lawsuit and they will probably have to payout millions of dollars? I dont think Dixie will be around too much longer! Where is the fuel shut off on these mowers anyway? Mine are real easy to get to.

Kind of a shame since they are made here. I saw one mowing an airport ditch about the same day that accident happened. He was stuck with both wheels in the bottom of the V, spinning and going nowhere. Of course that would happen with any ztr I believe.

fiveoboy01
05-10-2010, 11:04 AM
It may just be poor maintenance/neglect, in fact I'm willing to bet that's what it is.

I check my mowers over once a week for loose or rubbing lines and fittings, and double-check the fuel lines to make sure they're not rubbing through on anything. After all, the last thing you want is a fuel fire where you're sitting.

big acres
05-10-2010, 11:08 AM
That's a sad deal.

I too once had a ztr go up in flames while I was on it. It was a lesco, and getting old. The tailpipe which was factory welded to the muffler and curved downward had the welds come loose while I was mowing. The curved pipe vibrated and rotated to curve upward directly onto the plastic gas tank.

When I turned to stripe in the other direction, I caught a glimmer out of the corner of my eye.... the last strip had a trail of flames. Then I look over my shoulder to see three foot flames trailing off the tank. I was off the machine in seconds, but had an extinguisher in the truck... new tank and muffler and was good to go.

Glad I was hauling azz on that lawn or those flames mighta got me instead of trailing behind.

dbear
05-10-2010, 11:16 AM
Not saying it wasn't a DC, but I looked at at least a dozen articles, curious as to which model and age, and not one mentioned the brand. Anybody got a link with that info?

capnsac
05-10-2010, 12:27 PM
he didn't die, he was injured.

bradsd
05-10-2010, 02:09 PM
This could happen with any mower brand. I think I am sitting on about 14 gallons of fuel, this is a good lesson to us all on what can happen and to keep this in mind when mowing.

Snuzz
05-10-2010, 02:17 PM
he didn't die, he was injured.

http://www.wthr.com/Global/story.asp?S=12451263

Says he passed!

BCPHOTO
05-10-2010, 04:22 PM
Not saying it wasn't a DC, but I looked at at least a dozen articles, curious as to which model and age, and not one mentioned the brand. Anybody got a link with that info?

One local tv news station had a photo of a Dixie and said it was a Dixie that caught fire.

MOHUSTLER
05-10-2010, 04:36 PM
Please if this ever happens to anyone just get away from the mower and let it burn, Dont try and shut off the fuel. No peice of equipment is worth your life.

yardatwork
05-10-2010, 07:08 PM
Wow...that's too bad. Maybe the guy hit something causing a problem with the fuel tank or line...maybe he was even smoking. I see sooooooo many landscapers smoking while pumping gas or filling up the trimmer or mowers. Accidents happen so fast.

Hoy landscaping
05-10-2010, 07:10 PM
who carries an extinguisher? i have one on the truck and have been trying to figure a good place to put on one the ztr

mowerbrad
05-10-2010, 07:31 PM
I carry a fire extinguisher with me in my truck, though, I too would like to find a good place to put on on the mower.

This type of thing is most likely not the cause of the mower and in no way reflects the way the company builds their mowers. There are many things that could have caused this, that I can't even list them all.

But this is just another example as to why we all need to be observant while out mowing. Not only observant of people/animals/objects around the area we are mowing but also the equipment we are riding on.

Richard Martin
05-10-2010, 07:44 PM
The only way I can figure that gas was spraying on the poor guy is if the mower was fuel injected. A standard pump usually won't have the kind of pressure it would take to douse someone in gas. It would spray gas but not far. I've seen regular low pressure fuel leaks and they're not that bad. The pump on the Kohler EFI is probably quite capable of spraying a good stream of gas a long distance. I have a EFI Dixie and I just replaced all of the rubber parts in the entire system, from the fuel tank grommets to the all of the hoses. I didn't have a leak in a hose but one of the grommets broke off and fuel went everywhere. Fortunately I was checking the condition of the grommets when it happened so the mower wasn't running. If you have a EFI mower make sure you get high pressure EFI hose from the fuel pump forward. Dixie used regular fuel hose from the factory on mine. Not a good idea and it may be the cause of this fire.

grassman177
05-10-2010, 07:49 PM
i am very sure dixie has nothing to do with the accident and neglect or age had everything to do with it and it happens more than you think, just most dont stick around to get cought on fire. RIP

rcslawncare
05-10-2010, 07:58 PM
Whoever may be at fault, just a sad reminder to check your stuff and work safe!!!

BCPHOTO
05-10-2010, 08:50 PM
The only way I can figure that gas was spraying on the poor guy is if the mower was fuel injected. A standard pump usually won't have the kind of pressure it would take to douse someone in gas. It would spray gas but not far. I've seen regular low pressure fuel leaks and they're not that bad. The pump on the Kohler EFI is probably quite capable of spraying a good stream of gas a long distance. I have a EFI Dixie and I just replaced all of the rubber parts in the entire system, from the fuel tank grommets to the all of the hoses. I didn't have a leak in a hose but one of the grommets broke off and fuel went everywhere. Fortunately I was checking the condition of the grommets when it happened so the mower wasn't running. If you have a EFI mower make sure you get high pressure EFI hose from the fuel pump forward. Dixie used regular fuel hose from the factory on mine. Not a good idea and it may be the cause of this fire.


This is interesting insight. I'll make a new post when the local news reveals the results of the investigation. The mower was taken by police.

The victim had some 4th degree burns and that is really burnt.
BC

louisianarebel
05-10-2010, 09:13 PM
Maybe filled up too high and the pressure was spraying out the gas caps? I've had it pour out of mine on a big incline, also had a hose come off, could have been VERY bad if motor was hotter.

Hoy landscaping
05-10-2010, 10:45 PM
we had a "building fire" last month for a burning lawnmower in the rear of the house

MikeKle
05-11-2010, 03:17 AM
Please if this ever happens to anyone just get away from the mower and let it burn, Dont try and shut off the fuel. No peice of equipment is worth your life.

If its a big diesel, 72" deck ZTR that cost over $14K, I think Im going to try to stop the fire instead of just running away from it and letting it burn up, I think anyone would do this? Its foolish to just let your expensive equipment burn up when you can at least try to stop it!!! Just my opinion, for what I paid for all my mowers, I would surely stay and try to stop it..YES SIR!

LwnmwrMan22
05-11-2010, 06:59 AM
If its a big diesel, 72" deck ZTR that cost over $14K, I think Im going to try to stop the fire instead of just running away from it and letting it burn up, I think anyone would do this? Its foolish to just let your expensive equipment burn up when you can at least try to stop it!!! Just my opinion, for what I paid for all my mowers, I would surely stay and try to stop it..YES SIR!

Wrong answer again, that's what insurance is for. Not only that, but it sounds like this guy was an employee of the district, so what does he have to lose if the mower burns up?

Unless he's already on record for destroying other equipment and is about to lose his job over one more "incident", I would have run away.

MOHUSTLER
05-11-2010, 09:53 AM
If its a big diesel, 72" deck ZTR that cost over $14K, I think Im going to try to stop the fire instead of just running away from it and letting it burn up, I think anyone would do this? Its foolish to just let your expensive equipment burn up when you can at least try to stop it!!! Just my opinion, for what I paid for all my mowers, I would surely stay and try to stop it..YES SIR!

This is the most ignorant statement I have herd on this site. You would risk losing your life for $14,000. A 5gal can of gas in your basement can blow your house off its foundation. And on most mowers you are between 10-15gal of gas that can explode at any moment if your machine is on fire. In no way is that worth trying to salvage a peice of equipment that should be insured for reasons like this.

alanauer
05-11-2010, 10:22 AM
I think I'll find out where my fuel shutoff is, and practice using it.

rcslawncare
05-11-2010, 10:45 AM
If its a big diesel, 72" deck ZTR that cost over $14K, I think Im going to try to stop the fire instead of just running away from it and letting it burn up, I think anyone would do this? Its foolish to just let your expensive equipment burn up when you can at least try to stop it!!! Just my opinion, for what I paid for all my mowers, I would surely stay and try to stop it..YES SIR!

Insurance, use it!!!!!

Richard Martin
05-11-2010, 03:31 PM
I think I'll find out where my fuel shutoff is, and practice using it.

It doesn't work that way.

I've had gasoline spill on me from equipment before. I didn't even know it until it had soaked through my pants and then my longjohns. On all of these rear engines mowers the fuel system is behind the operator. I can easily imagine getting a good bit of gas on yourself before you even notice there is a leak. In the case of the deceased gentleman I'm sure he didn't even know there was a gas leak until he caught on fire.

It may not be a good idea to know where the fuel shutoff is. It is always the best course of action when dealing with fire to retreat from it until you are properly equipped to deal with it.

LwnmwrMan22
05-11-2010, 03:43 PM
It doesn't work that way.

I've had gasoline spill on me from equipment before. I didn't even know it until it had soaked through my pants and then my longjohns. On all of these rear engines mowers the fuel system is behind the operator. I can easily imagine getting a good bit of gas on yourself before you even notice there is a leak. In the case of the deceased gentleman I'm sure he didn't even know there was a gas leak until he caught on fire.

It may not be a good idea to know where the fuel shutoff is. It is always the best course of action when dealing with fire to retreat from it until you are properly equipped to deal with it.

Same here Richard.

One time doing cleanups I was busy, not paying attention, and filled up the backpack blower without putting the gas cap back on.
]
I didn't realize it until I had a cool feeling going down the back of my leg where the gas had soaked through my jeans and was running down my leg.

If there would have been a fire, I would not have been able to just throw the backpack blower off the back and be away from it.

AllSeasonServices
05-11-2010, 04:54 PM
Heads up. When I worked as a mech for my last employer before I went solo, I would take a standard extinguisher floor mount for the trucks and bolt it to the ROPS. Its secure, out of the way, and easily accessible in an emergency.
And yea risk assessment. At least get off the machine and look at what is going on before trying to put out a fire while sitting between two plastic fuel tanks.
Common sense.

Yater
05-11-2010, 06:48 PM
This is the most ignorant statement I have herd on this site.

This is funny.

Yater
05-11-2010, 06:52 PM
If there would have been a fire, I would not have been able to just throw the backpack blower off the back and be away from it.

My clothes are coming off in that case. I don't care who I offend.

Lawn Man Dave
05-11-2010, 07:22 PM
Custodian at the Carmel Indiana High School, was engulfed in flames while mowing on a Dixie Chopper. Passersby helped extinguish the flames and he was taken to the hospital where he later died.

On another tv news report, a witness said that fuel was spraying out of the mower onto the victim and he was trying to shut it off. They also reported that it was a Dixie.

RIP

http://www.wthr.com/Global/story.asp?S=12430999



Please post a link stating that he later died. The one above and last I heard said that we was talking after they put the fire out.

I am going to say neglect caused it...

seabee24
05-11-2010, 07:41 PM
i would honestly tell every person wiht a mower to find a spot for a fire ext. even a walk behind.

i have had 4 fires over the years. s weree small enough that driving to a blower or hose put them out.

1 was serious enough to use a fire extigisher. saved the machine

1 cought the fuel line on fire. - lost the machine, took the fire department 30 mins to put it out as the gas slowly poored out of the fuel line like a flame thrower.

Most of these were casued by a poor design between the muffler and another surface. leafs got caought up in there and bam you have a fire. YEs we clean the machines, but on a lesco walk behind, it got to the point we had to have a guy stand there with a blower and blow off the engine area every couple of passes while in the fall season. - poor manufactuare design

puppypaws
05-11-2010, 08:26 PM
Put this into some type of perspective, there is a tremendous number of mowers running each and every day, how many people have any of you ever heard of being burned to death by a mower during your life on earth. There is a very good chance this is the first.

Freak accidents take lives everyday, there are many more people dieing each year from bee stings than burning to death from a mower catching on fire. Contrary to popular belief, death by accident cannot be prevented, if it could be, it would have been!!!

ll landscaping
05-11-2010, 08:58 PM
had a land pride zt 60 burst to flames on friday only a pair of frt tires left cant get dealer or manufactor

AutumnLeaves
05-14-2010, 09:36 AM
To the post that said he was just injured, he was burnt over 80 percent of his body ,full thickness burns. He was more concerned with the people helping him and getting them away from the tractor then himself. After seeing him in burn unit and what family is going through I will never ever take a loved one for granted. Even if my hubby is in the dog house- I will always hug him ,hold his hand and give him a kiss. His family could not even do that. Even if he did not pass it would have been months/years of painful surgery and therapy.You never know what can happen.
I have been doing research and over 94,315 rear engine tractor/mowers have been recalled since 2000 according to the CPSC for fuel or coolant spaying down the operator.One tractor has fuel line that runs to close to transmission fan and when it sags the fan chops it and with fuel injection it soaks down operator very fast and heat from exhaust lights vapors. most receive burns to hands and face while trying to work on it. Dixie Chopper had a recall for the fuel tank unit-when cap gets put on it cracks the seam open and/or seals tear. The rivet line has a weak spot causing bottom to split making the fuel dump out bottom. Even replacement part had flaws. One guy went to his garage and smelled fuel and he pulled the over head door open to let in light and while he was looking for leak he heard a click(hot water heater kicked on)he got out but had burns to his legs and back and had to have house rebuilt.

puppypaws
05-14-2010, 09:49 AM
To the post that said he was just injured, he was burnt over 80 percent of his body ,full thickness burns. He was more concerned with the people helping him and getting them away from the tractor then himself. After seeing him in burn unit and what family is going through I will never ever take a loved one for granted. Even if my hubby is in the dog house- I will always hug him ,hold his hand and give him a kiss. His family could not even do that. Even if he did not pass it would have been months/years of painful surgery and therapy.You never know what can happen.

This is the statement we should all remember, a transformation of the life we have always known can take place in the blink of an eye, as we see from this example.

alanauer
05-14-2010, 10:18 AM
How would you protect yourself and your crew? Surely the first rule is get away from the equipment and roll on the ground. On ride-ons, do you carry a fire extinguisher, fire blanket or whatever? Are there non-flammable coveralls?

Decades ago local barns had glass containers of fire ******ant that would be released when heated. If still available maybe they could be mounted on the roll bar.

Anybody know if diesel is less hazardous than gasoline?

As was said, you never know what can happen. But we can prepare for it.

mnglocker
05-14-2010, 10:33 AM
How would you protect yourself and your crew? Surely the first rule is get away from the equipment and roll on the ground. On ride-ons, do you carry a fire extinguisher, fire blanket or whatever? Are there non-flammable coveralls?

Decades ago local barns had glass containers of fire ******ant that would be released when heated. If still available maybe they could be mounted on the roll bar.

Anybody know if diesel is less hazardous than gasoline?

As was said, you never know what can happen. But we can prepare for it.


Techinically speaking Diesel is combustable, while Gasoline is flamable. So Gasoline will touch off at under 100*F if it has a heat source, Diesel needs more heat.

And my God, let the machines burn. Have you ever been able to rewire, paint and replace all the tires, plastic and seat for less than $500? NO

Pay your deductable, total the machine and get a shiney new one. :hammerhead:

Richard Martin
05-14-2010, 12:16 PM
Techinically speaking Diesel is combustable, while Gasoline is flamable. So Gasoline will touch off at under 100*F if it has a heat source, Diesel needs more heat.

The vapors of gas can "flash" at -40°. The vapors of diesel can "flash" at 143°. But don't be fooled by those numbers into thinking that diesel is safer than gas. Remember, we're dealing with the flash point here where the vapors can ignite if given a ignition source. Of the two fuels diesel will ignite and burn at a lower point than gas. Diesel will burn at 410° and gas is generally around 540°. Gasoline has to have a higher temperature so it won't self combust inside of an engine. Octane comes into play with self or autoigntion temps.

alanauer
05-14-2010, 01:21 PM
I thought that diesel was less volatile and its fumes were harder to ignite, but it's apparently not that simple.

Thanks for the facts and numbers. I'm not smart enough to interpret them all, so let me try a summary statement, subject to your corrections if it's not basically right.

"Diesel may have several advantages over gas, but leak-related fire safety is NOT one of them."

mnglocker
05-14-2010, 01:22 PM
I thought that diesel was less volatile and its fumes were harder to ignite, but it's apparently not that simple.

Thanks for the facts and numbers. I'm not smart enough to interpret them all, so let me try a summary statement, subject to your corrections if it's not basically right.

"Diesel may have several advantages over gas, but leak-related fire safety is NOT one of them."

There'ya go. When your machine is leaking and on fire, get off and get away.

Richard Martin
05-14-2010, 03:04 PM
"Diesel may have several advantages over gas, but leak-related fire safety is NOT one of them."

Yeah, we'll leave it at that.

fiveoboy01
05-14-2010, 04:18 PM
"Diesel may have several advantages over gas, but leak-related fire safety is NOT one of them."

Being a diesel mechanic for the past 8 years, I disagree with that statement.

AutumnLeaves
05-15-2010, 01:48 AM
In my research he had the most extensive burns and the only death from a mower fire I found. When I added the numbers up of recalled mowers/tractors my heart sank. The 94,315 were just the rear engine ones. There are more mower recalls for different body styles.
It is way to many to begin with-companies need to get there heads out of their butts!!
The witness reports say he was getting sprayed by liquid(gas) and then he caught fire. He was mowing at a high school. Two adults and 3 teen boys helped him.
The boys took off their shirts to help put him out and the tractor. They acted heroically no matter the sad out come. One person said when he sees someone mowing now he wonders if he will act quickly enough to help someone.
His mower was not a old mower. The man that has posted on this site about his brand new Scag catching fire after only mowing for 10 minutes the first time he used it proves that it is not always a maintenance issue. Sometimes it is just a design flaw.
I looked at John Deere today and was shocked when I saw the fuel line was not secure and had at least 8 inches to move up and down and flop over -I walked away.
I am sure that anybody that has heard or seen this story looks over their mower. I know I wont be getting on my mower -I might buy a goat or some horses. At least they would mow and fertilize the yard at same time :cool2: But seriously to me there is a big problem--I would not ever want t see another person die the way Rick did.

kb9nvh
05-24-2010, 10:14 PM
This happened here in indiana and I heard about it but never could find out what type of mower he was using. Horrible accident..I wonder how the gas got "sprayed" on him?


In my research he had the most extensive burns and the only death from a mower fire I found. When I added the numbers up of recalled mowers/tractors my heart sank. The 94,315 were just the rear engine ones. There are more mower recalls for different body styles.
It is way to many to begin with-companies need to get there heads out of their butts!!
The witness reports say he was getting sprayed by liquid(gas) and then he caught fire. He was mowing at a high school. Two adults and 3 teen boys helped him.
The boys took off their shirts to help put him out and the tractor. They acted heroically no matter the sad out come. One person said when he sees someone mowing now he wonders if he will act quickly enough to help someone.
His mower was not a old mower. The man that has posted on this site about his brand new Scag catching fire after only mowing for 10 minutes the first time he used it proves that it is not always a maintenance issue. Sometimes it is just a design flaw.
I looked at John Deere today and was shocked when I saw the fuel line was not secure and had at least 8 inches to move up and down and flop over -I walked away.
I am sure that anybody that has heard or seen this story looks over their mower. I know I wont be getting on my mower -I might buy a goat or some horses. At least they would mow and fertilize the yard at same time :cool2: But seriously to me there is a big problem--I would not ever want t see another person die the way Rick did.

kb9nvh
05-24-2010, 10:22 PM
http://www.wthr.com/Global/story.asp?S=12451263

Please post a link stating that he later died. The one above and last I heard said that we was talking after they put the fire out.

I am going to say neglect caused it...

integrityman
05-24-2010, 10:57 PM
A sad but great thread. Very informative. I hope all L/S users digest this one.

ZTR_Diesel
05-24-2010, 11:54 PM
Very, very good read. Just really sorry for the family - thoughts & prayers headed your say.

I second all the comments about check your fuel lines (keep them secure) and keep your machines clean. Also maintain a fire extinquisher on your unit, if at all possible.

As for diesel being safer than gas...it simply is. However it is true that atomized fuel spraying directly into an exaust pipe could in fact ignite. It's a large part of the reason most school buses are diesel, the fuel is simply a lot less volatile overall.

PPS.inc
05-25-2010, 12:54 AM
Thats very sad. In Michigan a guy on a Z flipped the tractor in a water filled ditch. He got pinned and didn't make it. Please be safe guys. A little extra whipping is not worth your life, I try to be safe as possible. Know the danger involved with a tractor, it can save your life.

soloscaperman
05-25-2010, 01:02 AM
This is another reason why you SHOULD CLEAN YOUR MOWERS! I clean and inspect my mower once a day or two. You have to understand there is a lot of vibration on mowers and it being either used or sitting on the trailer stuff moves. Things contract and expand from heat cycles.

If there is a fire jump off and use a fire extinguisher or use a hose from a house.

Richard Martin
05-26-2014, 10:01 AM
I'm bringing this back to the top. I want to remind everybody to PLEASE check your fuel tanks grommets and gas lines. They're super easy to replace. I just replaced all of the grommets, fuel lines and filters, across every gas powered machine I have. The last time I did all of my machines was 4 years ago. I have checked them regularly since then. None of my fuel system parts were showing any sort of wear or deterioration. It's just what you need to do.

Stay safe out there.

southerntide
05-26-2014, 10:11 AM
It may just be poor maintenance/neglect, in fact I'm willing to bet that's what it is.

I check my mowers over once a week for loose or rubbing lines and fittings, and double-check the fuel lines to make sure they're not rubbing through on anything. After all, the last thing you want is a fuel fire where you're sitting.

Sad thing yes, but I agree could be older mower bad maintained, worn out fuel lines pop loose or rupture why you should always be checking you machinery for problems. No mater the brand stuff will go bad and wear out need replacing, don't wait till it is to late spend the money and fix it when you see it.

"He was totally fine one minute and in the next minute, he was totally in flames," said witness Kinsey Wallace.

That pretty much points to bad fuel line rupturing by the sounds of it probably dry rotted.


I don't think this will be on DC's hand or fault. But I am sure someone will be trying to sue.

herler
05-26-2014, 10:24 AM
It could have been as simple as forgetting to put the gas cap back on, too.
Regular mower, fuel it up and forget to put the cap back on, get in the seat and start rolling...
Gas sloshes around, some sprays out here and there but it's not too bad until suddenly one hits a solid bump and fuel goes everywhere...
All over the worker, the engine, a spark POOF!

It would be sad to see a company getting sued over this, soon after come tethered fuel caps, great idea other than it will cost more and it's more parts that can break... Of course it still doesn't prevent forgetting to put it back on.

32vld
05-26-2014, 10:25 AM
I did not read the whole thread.

Though I will say a mower on a lawn is only going to burn the lawn. That guy should of gotten off gotten away from the burning mower and call the fire department.

mpkav
05-26-2014, 11:27 AM
Very ironic this post has come up. This was this past Saturday. I was mowing a little league field, thank god no one was there. This original post happened 15 minutes from me.
http://i644.photobucket.com/albums/uu167/mpkav/C6ABFC6B-A7D0-440B-81FD-6929D2941F27.png (http://s644.photobucket.com/user/mpkav/media/C6ABFC6B-A7D0-440B-81FD-6929D2941F27.png.html)
Posted via Mobile Device

Richard Martin
05-26-2014, 11:39 AM
I did not read the whole thread.

Though I will say a mower on a lawn is only going to burn the lawn. That guy should of gotten off gotten away from the burning mower and call the fire department.

The mower sprayed fuel on him as it was running. Apparently there were people (coworkers) near the mower and the operator tried to turn the mower off for their safety.

I'm pretty sure everybody will miss the point of why I brought this thread back up. Oh well, enjoy your BBQ.

lawnandsnowguy
05-26-2014, 12:18 PM
I had a little toro snow blower catch on fire on me february this year, brand new unit, first time refilling fuel, didn't spill a single drop, started it up. It's on fire, tried to put out quickly, couldn't, so I left, called the fire department. Not worth trying to put out, especially with a full tank of fuel and the risk of explosion. It's best to carry a fire extinguisher in the truck at all times, especially with all these made in china parts, things are made so cheaply now a days. And always carry insurance, it's cheap.

mpkav
05-26-2014, 12:27 PM
I had been looking for a good fire extinguisher to attach to the ROPS about a month ago. I got busy and just hadn't gotten one yet. Quite honestly as fast as my mower went it wouldn't have made a difference. I never went close to it knowing the animal fire is.
Posted via Mobile Device

herler
05-26-2014, 12:32 PM
The mower sprayed fuel on him as it was running. Apparently there were people (coworkers) near the mower and the operator tried to turn the mower off for their safety.

I'm pretty sure everybody will miss the point of why I brought this thread back up. Oh well, enjoy your BBQ.

Again it could have been as simple as a worker who forgot to put the fuel cap back on the tank after refueling, there's little difference in ways of seeing things happen from a distance between an EFI spray and an open fuel tank spewing gas... This may be hard to understand until you've left the cap off and hit a bump once or twice to see just how much fuel can come up through that opening.
Matter of fact I am certain an open gas tank could dump a whole lot more fuel than the EFI, and it all comes out in an instant.
You hit a good solid bump with a missing gas cap and I could see about half that tank emptying itself out.

Now I'm off to work, I don't take many Holidays off.

Bilrus61
05-26-2014, 01:37 PM
MP is that a Turf Tiger? What engine was on it? Do you know the cause? How man hours were on the mower?

mpkav
05-26-2014, 04:14 PM
MP is that a Turf Tiger? What engine was on it? Do you know the cause? How man hours were on the mower?

It was a 2008 Wildcat with 400 hrs. It had the liquid cooled 26 Kaw on it. I have no idea what caused it other than some type of fuel leak judging by how quick it went up.
I had a pretty good branch get stuck back there about 20 minutes before. I yanked it out while mowing. A little time later I switched from the right tank to the left. It started to sputter so I turned it off and did a quick check. I didn't find anything so I let it sit while I did some with my 36.i went back and started it and let it idle for a while. Did a couple more lines with the 36, before I knew it it was up in flames. I couldn't even get close. The only thing I can figure is that branch did something to a fuel line.
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32vld
05-26-2014, 07:59 PM
The mower sprayed fuel on him as it was running. Apparently there were people (coworkers) near the mower and the operator tried to turn the mower off for their safety.

I'm pretty sure everybody will miss the point of why I brought this thread back up. Oh well, enjoy your BBQ.

Turn off for safety?

What mower is out there that will not stop running when the operator gets of the seat or lets go of the handles? Plus as the fire quickly disables the engine that mower is not going any where.

No need for heroics. Just get off, watch it burn, ask who around and scrounge up the ingredient's for Smore's, make, eat, watch, and wait for the FD to show up.

Richard Martin
05-26-2014, 11:54 PM
What mower is out there that will not stop running when the operator gets of the seat or lets go of the handles?

Well actually... The mower that it is said he was using was a Dixie Chopper. Mine is a 2003 and it only came with one crappy seat safety that takes 2 seconds to defeat. One of my Dixie dealers showed me how to do it. Just unplug one relay. That's it.

If you got off of the seat under any circumstances, even with the blades off (no safety), steering handles in neutral (no safety there either), and parking brake on (no safety there either), the mower will still shut off. Every older Dixie I've ever seen had the relay disconnected.

BTW, all of the rest of my mowers have all of the factory safeties in place and operating.

The newer Dixies have more safeties but still not as many as some other mowers.