A barn fire Saturday added to the record year of call-outs for the Lumby Fire Department.
Crews were called to a report of a blaze at a dairy farm operation on Dure Meadow Road at 6:30 p.m. on a frosty Saturday evening.
“We were there until midnight,” said fire chief Tony Clayton. “The cold made things difficult for us. Guys’ breathing apparatuses were freezing faster than they were thawing.”
Temperatures were over -20 C at the time of the fire.
Lumby crews received assistance from their colleagues at the Lavington Fire Department.
The barn housed approximately 80 dairy cows and about 30 dairy calves.
Farm staff were able to get all of the animals out without injury.
“There was another barn on the property so staff got the animals there to keep them warm,” said Clayton. “The fire did not disrupt the operation as they were milking cows by 5 a.m. the next day.”
The cause of the fire is under investigation. Clayton said a tractor parked outside the barn caught fire and spread to the structure. Damage was limited to a corner area used for calf-rearing.
What caused the tractor to catch fire, said Clayton, remains under investigation.
Nobody was hurt in the fire which was the 125th call-out for the department in 2017, up from the record-setting 119 the year before.
“We never had more than 100 calls before that,” said Clayton.
The farm operation had insurance for the barn.