Rapid Response to large barn fire in Hodley near Newtown 21st November 2015

As a result of a huge barn fire involving over 100 tonnes of straw; 5 fire tenders and approximately 25 fire crew were needed to tackle the blaze throughout the cold evening of Saturday 21st November 2015.

The barn ablaze…

The barn ablaze…

At 18:35hrs Newtown RRT received a call from Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service control room, and in less than an hour we had soup simmering onsite!  The team of 6 RRT members from Newtown worked together to provide the emergency services from Welshpool, Llanidloes, Llandrindod Wells, Newtown and Bishops Castle with hot soup, bread rolls, hot drinks and an abundance of food snacks.

Each crew member was extremely grateful, with one commenting “This is brilliant. We’re normally fed with cold, hard dry stuff and this lovely hot soup gave me such a shock – I could feel it going right through me warming me all up!”

Simmering soup!

Simmering soup!

When the fire was under control, both the refreshments and equipment were left onsite with the incident commander, and the RRT returned later to collect them. Soon after midnight the fire crews well and truly had the whole blaze reduced to virtually nothing and they were able to safely leave the incident site before 01:00hrs.

Firefighters tackling the blaze

Firefighters tackling the blaze

The cause of the fire isn’t yet known, but it is thought that an electrical fault on an old tractor may have started it.  The tractor had been used and was parked up in the barn next to the straw about an hour before the fire was noticed and it seemed to be coming from around the front of the vehicle.  The farmer desperately tried to remove it from the barn to stop the fire spreading but the steering had stopped working and it became wedged up against one of the main metal uprights.

Whilst it was a huge loss to the farmer, he was very pleased that he had decided to move his livestock from that barn the day before!

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