On the line: Tractor snags wire
Sections of Marion County Lake lost power at 2:35 p.m. Friday after farming equipment snagged a recently installed Vyve cable line along Turkey Creek Rd., threatening the driver with electrocution from a neighboring Evergy line.
The driver, Danial Hett, has been transporting farm equipment for five years. He usually has no issues with Turkey Creek Rd. despite low-hanging lines.
“I’d never had an issue with these crossovers,” he said.
Hett reported usually having six to eight inches of clearance between the tallest farm equipment and the cables on Turkey Creek Rd. He was unaware Vyve had installed a new television cable until he saw it caught on his machinery.
The top harrow disk on a piece of equipment he was towing caught the line, shredded it, and snapped the pole it was strung on. Hett heard the pole snap, thought a piece of the equipment had gotten loose, and stopped driving.
A live power line then fell across Hett’s tractor.
Marion firefighters thought the cable TV line he initially hit might not have been strung up tightly enough, or the wind might have bounced it within range of Hett’s equipment.
Rubber tractor tires prevented Hett from being electrocuted.
Hett was stranded in the tractor with emergency crews standing by for more than half an hour while Evergy disconnected power — affecting chunks of residents up to Marion Airport.
“Next time I have a boring day, I’m not going to say, ‘I wish something exciting would happen,’” Hett told emergency responders from the tractor.