Cobden – A 21-year-old Queens Line farmer escaped injury after the John Deere tractor he was driving went out of control on a downward curved hill and plunged into a swampy area on the Foresters Falls Road near Hwy. 17 just east of Cobden last Tuesday, May 3.
Bryson Duncan was driving the 2009 John Deere self-propelled fertilizer spreader/tractor when it shut itself down, explained his father, Wilfred.
“The machine just switched itself off,” Mr. Duncan said. “It blew a fuse. He had no steering and no brakes. He went where it took him.”
This is the first time anything like this has ever happened, Bryson said.
With no control over the tractor, he wasn’t sure what was going to happen, but did note the car that was overtaking him on the downward curve did not get hit. The tractor then went across the Foresters Falls Road and managed to miss a hydro pole. It did take out a few guardrail posts and speed sign at the end of Chris Olmstead’s driveway, where it then plunged into the swamp, taking out many small trees and leaving deep ruts.
The tractor remained upright and only a small amount of the fertilizer spilled into the swamp.
A tow truck arrived at the scene after the mishap but was not able to remove the tractor from the swamp.
The next morning, Ottawa Metro Towing, from the east end of the city, attended the scene. Using a truck with a rotator bar, the tractor was dislodged and moved to a safer location nearby by noon.
Mr. Duncan said county employees removed some of the guardrail poles, making it much easier to tow the spreader/tractor out of the swamp.
He said as much of the fertilizer as possible was shovelled out of the swamp. However, what was left will do no harm to the environment, he added.
The tractor/spreader did not sustain as much damage as might be expected, he said. The steps are destroyed, but other than that, only minor repairs to the grill and suspension are required.
Connie Tabbert, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Eganville Leader