There is nothing left but twisted metal after a fire destroyed a nearly empty dairy barn and bale shed near New Bothwell.
By Marianne Curtis
A former dairy barn turned into a machine storage and repair building was destroyed by fire at a loss estimated at about $1 million.
Around 4:15 in the afternoon on September 20, New Bothwell fire crews responded to the million dollar blaze at Staib Farms in the RM of Hanover.
New Bothwell Fire Chief Ken Hiebert says this is the biggest fire his department has responded to in his twenty- year career as a volunteer fire fighter in the community.
“It was the largest fire I’ve seen in my 20 years with the department,” stated Hiebert. “Thankfully the wind was on our side or a new barn and houses on the property could have also been lost.
When fire crews arrived in scene a nearly empty barn was fully engulfed in flames. Flames moved quickly to a bale shed and destroyed equipment inside.
“The fire lept more than halfway up nearby silos which created a lot of heat,” Hiebert added. The largest silo ended up warping in the blaze. “The silo actually twisted.
Hiebert says he was grateful for the arrival of crews from the Kleefeld and Grunthal Fire Departments along with crews from Niverville and Steinbach who arrived to help contain the blaze. At one point there was almost forty fire fighters on scene.
“If we had waited longer I have a feeling that silo would have buckled and toppled over,” Hiebert continued.
Subscribers to NoLimits, a local high speed internet provider, were also affected by the fire as the company’s antennae located on the top of a silo on the farm was scorched by the fire.
The fire was ruled as accidental.