Firefighters Battle Barn Blaze in Peters Township

Firefighters Battle Barn Blaze in Peters Township

Fire destroyed two barns at a Peters Township dairy farm Saturday, but firefighters kept it from spreading to nearby structures.

The fire call went out at 4:12 p.m. for a fire at the Brake dairy farm at 7100 Renninger Road in Peters Township.

Flames engulfed a large storage barn in the middle of a cluster of buildings when the first firefighters arrived at the scene, MMPW Fire Chief Dale Carbaugh said.

“It’s a large facility with a big bank barn in the middle,” Carbaugh said. “Our main concern right away was keeping it from spreading to other (nearby) buildings.”

A water source was quickly located and first volunteer firefighters attacked the fire with hand lines. Cows evacuated from the destroyed cow barn have been relocated to neighboring farms.

Franklin Fire Company’s ladder truck arrived and immediately went to aerial master stream operations. The big truck with it’s 500 gallon-per-minute smooth bore tip was able to effectively attack the fire from the air.

Peters Township dairy farm fire
Cows at the Peters Township dairy farm were quickly evacuated after fire broke out at about 4 p.m. Saturday. (Franklin Fire Co. photo)

With the ladder pipe being all but self-sufficient, crews were able to handle a “blitz fire” operation and start opening up and exposing fire.

Controlling Fire in a ‘Wicked’ Wind

In spite of what one firefighter called “this wicked wind,” fire fighters kept the fire loss to the bank barn and cow barn, Carbaugh said.

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“It was a rough night, but we had no injuries and all the cows are safe,” he said.

The last firefighters left the scene at about midnight. Carbaugh and MMPW volunteers returned this morning to check on bales of hay that continue to burn.

“There is still a lot of hay in the center of the barn that is burning,” he said.

It is under control, however, the fire chief said.

He believes electrical issues in the bank barn probably sparked the initial flames, which quickly spread to the dry hay stored there.

“We are calling it an accident,” he said.

Carbaugh had no estimate of the dollar amount of the loss, but said it will be “significant.” Insurance should cover much of the loss, he said.

About 50 firefighters were on the scene at the height of the fire. They and their equipment came from numerous Franklin and Fulton County departments and from Washington County, Md.

In addition to MMPW and the Franklins, Greencastle’s Rescue Hose, St. Thomas, Marion, Waynesboro, McConnellsburg and Washington County Md. departments sen volunteers and equipment to the scene.

Photos Courtesy Franklin Fire Company

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