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Staffordshire Fire & Rescue Service - Preventing, Protecting, Responding

Barn fire caused by spontaneous combustion

29/07/2015

Firefighters tackling the Doley Road incident
Firefighters tackling the Doley Road incident

A blaze which broke out in a barn at Adbaston near Eccleshall was sparked when 600 tonnes of bailed hay spontaneously combusted.

"This was a large fire and the crews have worked tirelessly, and in challenging circumstances, yesterday, throughout the night and today to get the situation under control."

Station Manager Paul Shaw

Crews worked through the night to extinguish the fire and are still at the incident at the Doley Road farm.

At the peak of the fire there were 38 firefighters at the scene. Crews from Eccleshall, Loggerheads, Stafford, Stone, Newcastle, Rising Brook, Kidsgrove, Brewood and Abbots Bromley attended the incident. The water carrier from Cannock and the welfare vehicle from Newcastle were also at the scene.

They were assisted by colleagues from Shrewsbury and Newport.

At the height of the blaze, firefighters wore breathing apparatus and used three main jets to bring the fire under control.

The fire broke out in an agricultural building measuring approximately 100ft by180ft.

Station Manager Paul Shaw, who attended the incident, said: "This was a large fire and the crews have worked tirelessly, and in challenging circumstances, yesterday, throughout the night and today to get the situation under control.

"It is absolutely vital that people storing hay do so in a safe manner to avoid a fire starting. Wet hay is far more likely to lead to a spontaneous combustion than dry hay and if it is put in a barn when it has more than 22 per cent moisture, the risk of it setting alight is significantly increased.

"As there was a large amount of hay being stored in this barn, the conditions were perfect for a fire to start and to spread rapidly. I would urge people to ensure that hay is always stored safely so that they will not be the victim of such an incident."

The first crew arrived at the incident at midday yesterday.