Farm family near Sawyer loses tractor in field fire.
A blackened metal frame, dangling wires, melted plastic, destroyed hoses and wheel rims with remnants of tires is all that is left of a tractor that caught fire and was consumed in southeast Pratt County on Tuesday afternoon.
At 5:15 p.m., Sawyer firefighters were alerted to a tractor on fire in the middle of a field at SE 70th Avenue and SE 80th Street.
Thick, black smoke was carried for miles as the tractor was consumed by the fire.
Michael Sink was driving the 2014 New Holland T8 360 and pulling a disk across a field in preparation for wheat planting. Sink said everything was working normally until he suddenly smelled an odor he had never smelled before in a tractor. Within seconds, fire erupted from the motor compartment and was coming around and underneath the cab.
Sink said he put the tractor in park, grabbed his son, who was riding with him, and got both of them clear of the tractor as the flames quickly spread.
Sink said he had no idea what caused the fire and other farmers at the scene agreed they didn’t know what could have caused the fire. There was what appeared to be burning fuel running down the side of the tractor but Sink said there was just no way to tell what started the fire in the first place.
The first firefighter on the scene said the tractor was completely involved and there was nothing to save on the tractor. At least three fire units responded to the scene but there was little they could do as the fire consumed the entire tractor. A neighbor said there were several explosions as the tires blew up.
Neighbors gathered at the scene and looked at the tractor that was a skeleton of its former self. The entire cab was gutted leaving only the frame and dangling wires. All the exterior fiberglass was either melted or burned away and the rims sat on the ground after the tires were burned away. Only a little bit of tire rubber was left.
The hydraulic cables leading from the tractor to the disk were damaged but, other than the burned hydraulic hoses and blackened hitch, the disk appeared to have little damage. The equipment belongs to 3B Farms of Sawyer.
No one was injured in the fire.