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Runaway Tractor

Jason has enjoyed being back to work the last week and a half. Yesterday he was on the tractor working away at turning and spreading compost piles. Things were moving along and the work was getting done until suddenly . . . it wasn’t. Jason said he didn’t quite know what happened but he had a serious “WTF” moment as he pressed down on the clutch and nothing happened. What should have happened was the tractor should have stopped. Instead the tractor just kept going full steam ahead with Jason having a freakout moment trying to figure out what the heck was happening to him and why the tractor was out of control. Jason was on a runaway tractor. I told him it sounded like he had that moment that riders hope to never have, the one when they realize their horse has bolted and is completely out of control at a mad gallop

Apparently the two piece rod that connects the clutch pedal to the clutch plate decided to come apart, leaving a freaked out Jason on the bolting tractor. After a couple of seconds of panic Jason saved himself by turning off the tractor which was quick thinking on his part. Since the tractor could not be driven in a, how shall we say this, safe and controlled manner, it sat in the pasture awaiting a new part.

the offending part, in two pieces instead of one

Although we are laughing about it now the truth is Jason narrowly avoided a major disaster. If he had been going downhill pulling the large, heavy batwing bushhog I shudder to think what the outcome of that would have been. Needless to say as soon as Jason had shut off the tractor he immediately went to order parts that were sent to him via overnight mail. The tractor is now back on good behavior and we hope it stays that way. Jason has assisted at the scene of many bad accidents involving farm equipment. Just as with horses you can never be too safe or to careful when working with equipment, and sometimes when you do everything right things can still go wrong.

After dealing with farm equipment for the last several years I now understand why every farmer I know complains about farm equipment. For stuff that is supposed to be so hardy it reminds me a lot of horses. It looks big and sturdy but is actually looking for a reason to break, usually with the worst possible timing.


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