With the hottest summer months approaching, spontaneous combustion litter fires pose a serious threat. Follow these 6 rules to reduce your risk!
Litter should be kept dry. Wet litter does NOT prevent a fire. In fact, it might have the opposite effect. "Heating and the formation of methane gas begin as the dry litter absorbs moisture." (Livestock and Poultry, Extension Alabama A&M and Auburn Universities) Methane gas = HIGHLY FLAMMABLE.
Caked litter should be separated from dry litter.
Avoid compacting moist or dry litter. By driving over the litter pile with compacting equipment, you are essentially trapping all the methane gas in the litter pile which will result in a fire.
Keep fuel outside of the litter shed. If a fire were to happen, fuel inside the shed will only maximize the damages incurred.
Keep mobile equipment out of the litter shed. Exhaust from mobile equipment could spark a fire.
LITTER SHOULD NOT BE STACKED MORE THAN 5 FEET. Stack litter away from wooden walls or structural posts.
Donald, J. 0., and J. P. Blake. 1994. Broiler Litter Storage. Extension publication ANR-0839. Alabama Cooperative Extension System, Auburn University, AL.
Donald, J. 0., and J. P. Blake. 1990. Litter Storage Facilities. 10/90-004. Alabama Cooperative Extension System, Auburn University, AL.