THE GRAINS Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) is running a series of workshops to give growers tips on how to minimise the risk of harvest fires.
In particular the workshops, to be held across Victoria and South Australia, will look at how to lower the chances of a fire starting in a pulse crop, traditionally the most at risk of igniting at harvest time.
The fine dust created by lentil residue can often rise up and land on hot parts of the harvester engine causing combustion.
A session was held at Swan Hill yesterday, to be followed by one in Warracknabeal today before workshops at Crystal Brook tomorrow and Cleve on Thursday.
The workshops have been designed especially for new lentil growers or those who have limited experience with lentil harvesting operations given the markedly larger acreage of lentils grown in areas such as the Victorian Mallee and the South Australian Upper North.
Speaking at the workshops will be fire safety experts, state authorities, engineers and growers with experience in growing lentils and what can trigger fires.
Topics will include: practical harvester modifications to reduce heat load; harvester hygiene and equipment maintenance; fire danger index and fire communication; new fire-fighting solutions to kit out headers, chaser bins and chaff carts; and this season's harvesting codes of conduct.