If you have a farm with livestock animals, insurance is a must-have. Insurance can cover any losses that occur due to acts of nature, accidents, fires, and explosions. While acts of nature and accidents may not be preventable, fires and explosions can be. Also, the key to maintaining an income through your farm is to incorporate as many preventive measures as you can by taking advantage of new technology. Additionally, using devices that can prevent disastrous fires may help reduce your insurance premiums. Here's why fire prevention is necessary and the devices that can help.
Problem: Highly explosive methane gas is produced as manure decomposes. Piles of manure can trap methane underneath. When you remove the manure from the pile, the methane gets released and could cause an explosion if there is a heat source nearby.
Prevention: Methane is undetectable by human senses, so you wouldn't know if methane is present without a monitoring device. Optical gas imaging is an infrared camera system that detects volatile organic compounds, gas, and heat. Whenever you move piles of manure, inspect the area by using optical gas imaging. This will allow you to see problems before they interact and cause an explosion. You can purchase this type of device through a local farm equipment supplier.
Problem: The moisture that naturally occurs in hay causes plant respiration, which means the sugars in the hay transform into water and carbon dioxide. Hay also contains bacteria and mold, which grow when moisture is present and produce heat. As the hay continues to respire, more heat can be produced until the temperatures exceed 170 to 190°F. At this point, the dry portions of the hay bales can erupt into flames due to the excessive amount of heat.
Prevention: Keep new bales of hay in a separate facility from your livestock, if possible. Inspect each hay bale with an electronic moisture meter before placing the hay bale in a confined area, especially in your main livestock barn. This is a device that is hand-held and has a probe that is designed to be inserted into items and materials such as bales of hay. Purchase an electronic moisture meter from your farm equipment store.
In conclusion, speak with your farm insurance company, like Cache Valley Insurance Inc, to see if there are discounts given for these and other devices that can reduce the risks of fires and explosions in your barn.