Kansas Farmer Sues CNH After His Equipment Catches Fire

On Wednesday, a lawsuit was filed against CNH Industrial America LLC by one of their customers in the District of Kansas who claimed that his baler caught fire, was destroyed, and destroyed parts of his property. 

The plaintiff, Reece Arnold, filed counts of product liability, breach of express and implied warranties, and negligence against the defendant in response to what he claimed was a defective piece of machinery sold by CNH.

On September 28, 2018, Arnold bought the baler, a piece of farming equipment used to cut and compress bales of hay and other materials. This specific baler was manufactured and distributed by the defendant, from KanEquip Inc. in Wamego, Kansas. The plaintiff said that CNH’s “express warranty provided Defendant will replace, at its option, any unit found to be defective in material or workmanship as outlined in its express warranty.” Arnold reportedly relied on the claim that the baler came with the express warranty and that the baler was free from defects when purchasing. 

On August 8, 2019, the baler, which was being properly operated in a field north of Rosalia, Kansas, caught on fire. The baler was completely destroyed as a result of the fire, as well as other personal property owned by the plaintiff.

The defendant was notified of the incident in January 2020 and inspected the equipment in April of that year. The defendant’s did not honor their warranty, which led to this lawsuit.

The plaintiff believes that “the Subject Baler was in a defective and unreasonably dangerous condition at the time it was manufactured by Defendant” and “negligently designed, engineered, manufactured, assembled, inspected and/or tested the Subject Baler.” Arnold said that these shortcomings caused the fire that destroyed his baler, and requested damages in excess of $75 thousand and any other compensation that the court determines he is owed.

The plaintiff is represented by Gates Shields Ferguson Swall Hammond.