Blaze destroys barn

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Farm Forum

The cause of a barn fire at 132nd Street and 377th Avenue on May 18 is under investigation, but the blaze is not considered suspicious.

As of late May 18, Aberdeen Rural Fire Department Chief Mark Stoks said they were unsure of how and where the fire started.

The steel barn was destroyed, as were several pieces of equipment housed in it.

“Everything in the building was a complete loss,” Stoks said.

Tires, frames and other parts of equipment could be seen inside the ruined building. Tanks in front of the barn also caught fire.

The barn housed a skid loader, Ford harvester, fertilizer truck and combine, in addition to other pieces of machinery, Stoks said.

The fertilizer truck was empty and was just being stored there, he said.

The fire was reported around 4:30 p.m. The dark gray plume of smoke in the partly cloudy sky was visible for miles.

The steel-sided barn was fully engulfed by the time area fire departments arrived.

No one was injured and there weren’t any animals in the barn, Stoks said.

There were some cattle nearby that a neighbor was able to move, he added.

The fire briefly spread into the grass north of the barn and to part of the west feedlot, adding a white haze to the surroundings. It didn’t spread to a house and propane tanks south of the barn.

In all, it burned less than an acre, Stoks said.

It took several long blasts of water to start extinguishing the fire. After that, the fire was quickly reduced to mostly hard-to-reach flames and hot spots.

Firefighters were on scene until after 8 p.m., but there weren’t any complications, Stoks said.

Several area fire departments responded to the fire, including Aberdeen Rural, Ipswich Fire Department and Warner Fire Department. Columbia was also called, but were turned around, Stoks said.

Aberdeen Ambulance, the South Dakota Highway Patrol, Brown County Emergency Management and the Brown County Sheriff’s Office also responded.

The fire is being investigated by Aberdeen Rural.