Fire Destroys Two Buildings At Columbus Junction Hog Farm - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

Fire Destroys Two Buildings At Columbus Junction Hog Farm

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A fire destroys two buildings at a hog farm in southeastern Iowa.

It happened about 10 miles outside of Columbus Junction.

Firefighters were called to the Mipa hog farm on county road X 17 around one o'clock.

It took 45 firefighters from several departments to put out the fire.

Firefighters say this large fire was difficult to fight.

The property was hilly, they had to truck in water, and the freezing temperatures froze up their water spraying gear.

They saved four out of six buildings at the hog farm.

Before heading back to the station, to get ready to do it all over again.

Columbus Fire Chief Lynn Mincer says, "It was big, it was very big, we could see it as soon as we left the station, we could see it from several miles out, I've heard people seen it from Wapello and Muscatine."

Back at the station weary firefighters re-coiled hoses, thawing them out and cleaning them up after a long day of firefighting.

"Lot of buildings involved, there was six buildings total here, they were all connected by a breezeway type that just kept feeding the other buildings, we lost two out of the six," says Mincer.

He says the weather didn't help either.

"We had to fight the elements, pumps freezing up, nozzles freezing up, guys getting cold, it's just something you have to deal with," says Mincer.

The Red Cross helped the firefighters deal with the elements, bringing food and water to the fire, and cutting pizza slices back at the station.

Volunteer John Oldfield says, "(I) Grabbed up as many volunteers as I could cause we knew that this was a big fire and so we just needed to help the firemen and back them up anyway we can."

Backing them up for as many hours as the fire crews need them.

"I don't know until we're released I guess, it might be 10 o' clock or maybe later, it just all part of helping out," says Oldfield.

Restoring their energy for the next fire call.

"The thing right now is to get our equipment back in shape, if we have another call, we have to get the trucks back into shape so we've got air packs we're filling, hoses that are froze solid, nozzles that are froze, right now its to get our trucks back into shape," says Mincer.

The fire remains under investigation.

It did kill pigs in the two barns, but an official number of pigs killed by the fire is unknown Friday night.

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