Engine compartment fire destroys Feller Buncher

Location: 
Bowers Lake (northwest of 100 Mile House, BC)
Date of Incident / Close Call: 
2014-02-07
Company Name: 
Katchmar Construction (1997) Ltd.
Details of Incident / Close Call: 

The operator of CAT TK 732B Feller Buncher began his shift by conducting his daily pre-checks then began working. At approximately 8:00 p.m. he stopped for lunch and out of the corner of his eye he noticed flames coming from the engine compartment.

The operator immediately pushed the fire suppression system and shut down the machine. When the fire suppression system did not extinguish the flames the operator radioed for the help of his co-worker. He then proceeded to open the engine hatch and jumped out to take two 5 lb. extinguishers to the flames. Unfortunately the flames continued.

When the co-worker arrived the fire had taken over the machine and unfortunately there was nothing left for them to do. The fire eventually went out on its own (see photos in attached pdf).

The root cause is unknown. The machine was maintained regularly and had no history of fires or any known leaks. There was no threat to the existing forest as the machine was working in snowy conditions and very cold temperatures. Thankfully no one was injured during the incident. There were no unsafe practices to report.

Learnings and Suggestions: 

• Always be in contact with a co-worker in case of an arising situation.

• Always be aware of your surroundings and the machine you are operating.

• Make sure you’re properly trained on the equipment, and be sure the emergency equipment is up-to date.

• Remember “RADAR”:  Recognize the risk, Assess the situation (stop to think), Develop a safe solution, Act safely to fix the problem, Report and record the upset condition.

For more information on this submitted alert: 

For more information: Jason Krueger at Katchmar Construction (1997) Ltd. (250) 395-2385

File attachments
Engine compartment fire destroys feller buncher.pdf
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