Spontaneous Combusting Mulch!! Must See & Read!!

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by PetalsandPines, Apr 29, 2003.

  1. PetalsandPines

    PetalsandPines LawnSite Member
    Posts: 248

    After doing a cleanup at a large commercial property Saturday, I got a phone call in the morning on Monday from the plant supervisor telling me that my mulch is burning up.... At that point I figured that they were just busting my balls like they usually do, so then I said "really??"....They asked what do you want us to do? I said jokingly, drag those sprinklers out and start watering then call the fire dept......Still thinking they were pulling my leg, I drive over to the plant and see the facility shrouded in a haze.....my stomach is hitting the floor as I pull up and see 4 employees trying to put out a smoldering mulch fire. It appears that the mulch ignited on it's own because of the heat build up in front of the building & the reflective glass. It was like I was in a bad dream as I tried to figure out how it happened and what to do....I thought maybe it was a cigarette, but I saw it happen with my own two eyes...out of no where, the mulch would start smoking and randomly smolder like a cancer. What the heck is going on here??? I heard this has happened to others in our area this year....Any insights? Has this ever happened to you??? What would be the legal proceedings had this caused property damage, and will it flare up again??

  2. PetalsandPines

    PetalsandPines LawnSite Member
    Posts: 248

    another pic

  3. thartz

    thartz LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 486

    Could you see an image of Jesus? could be the magnifiying glass syndrome.I have seen it catch on fire in a large pile that hasn't been turned and internally combusts.
  4. PetalsandPines

    PetalsandPines LawnSite Member
    Posts: 248

    I think I may have seen the devil, but man this is weird! And it's Buffalo, it was only 67 degrees that day
  5. FrankenScagMachines

    FrankenScagMachines LawnSite Platinum Member
    from IN
    Posts: 4,739

    I use to get the clippings off my yard to use in the garden and would leave them in a very very big pile (a few cubic yards or more) and if you dug into the pile (smelly) it got very very hot in there. So I took the garden tractor and blade and moved the pile every few days so that it could "stir" to prevent burning :eek: I don't do that with grass anymore but I do keep leaves for the garden and they sometimes get warm but not near to the grass. Never seen mulch get that hot, thanks for getting the pics lol. Thats funny.
  6. thartz

    thartz LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 486

    You said "we", are guys buying from the same mulch dealer?
  7. EJK2352

    EJK2352 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,150

    My mom grew up on a farm and told me how the neighbors barn burned to the ground. They bailed hay that was not quite dry enough and put it in loft where it spontaneously combusted. ED
  8. Lawn Specialties

    Lawn Specialties LawnSite Member
    Posts: 207

    I left grass clippings sit in my truck for a couple days once. When I went to the compost center to dump it one of the guys at the center that I knew pretty well looked at the steam rolling off of my bed said to wait a minute . He came out of the office with a big probe themometer and shoved it into the grass in my bed. I just about fell over as I watched it clime to 165. He told me that theyhad to be careful that there mulch didn't sit after it had gotten wet as it would get so hot it would start to smolder.
  9. greenman

    greenman LawnSite Addict
    Posts: 1,405

    I have seen mulch piles do that (steam) after a rain, but nothing like that. I have have wet mulch loaded into my trailer before that was smoldering (actually cooling off) from the heat. Going down the road with mulch steaming in the trailer,lol.
  10. precisionlawn

    precisionlawn LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 254

    I'm thinking thats God's way of saying he doesnt like your work.

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