Heat Adds Another Challenge for Firefighters
EUDORA, Kan. - Hay barns go up in flames Tuesday afternoon at a farm. It happened near E. 2100 Rd. and N. 1150 Rd. Firefighters would come to find out this call challenged them on many levels.
“We’d spend hours in there on the tire swing and jumping in the hay and we’d play movie star and stuff like that and that was our play time was in the hay barns,” Mark Grosdidir, who grew up on the farm, said.
Those hay barns went up in flames around 12:30 p.m. Grosdidir said two barns, about 100 feet from the home, housed hay and farm equipment.
“It’s hard to see part of the homestead burn down today,” he said.
That wasn’t the only hard part. Firefighters from up to eight agencies were called in to help. The Eudora Township Fire Department is a volunteer group. Firefighter Barry Larson said with limited staff and the windy and extremely dry conditions, they feared the fire could spread to a neighboring barn and a large corn field right behind the farm. He also said tanker trucks had to drive about a mile away to the closest fire hydrant.
Larson said on top of all that, the sun is scorching, topping temperatures out well above 100 degrees. They not only have to worry about putting out the flames, but they have to do it with 50 pounds of gear. Larson said the max they could fight the fire in these conditions, is about 45 minutes. He said they also had medic units on scene to treat any one suffering from heat-related injuries.
Larson said the most important piece of equipment came in a water bottle.
“You’re talking heat exhaustion and heat-related injuries and that’s constantly on our minds and with lack of man power, that’s a major deal,” Larson said.
The family said damage is estimated at $100,000.
Nobody was hurt in this fire. Fire investigators are looking into what might have caused it.
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