Children playing with matches spark large barn fire near Manchester, officials say
Children playing with matches sparked a large fire that destroyed a barn on a dairy farm in Freedom Township Thursday and damaged a truck, tractor and nearby garage, Manchester fire officials said.
No one was injured in the 5:55 p.m. fire on Pleasant Lake Road.
Manchester Fire Chief Bill Scully said firefighters could see the smoke from Manchester as they were responding. The station is more than eight miles from Horning Farms.
When firefighters arrived, the barn - full of hay and straw - was engulfed, Scully said.
"We were just protecting the exposures and trying to extinguish the hay," Scully said.
Firefighters from Manchester, Saline, Dexter and Clinton were on the scene until about 11 p.m.
Scully said the 40-foot by 80-foot barn was a total loss. A damage estimate has not been determined.
The fire was accidental and was apparently stated by young children, whose parents work on the dairy farm, Scully said. The kids apparently were playing with matches, he added.
Earl Horning, who runs Horning Farms with his family, said his son noticed the fire Thursday evening. He said the 30-year-old barn was only used for storage, and no animals were in danger.
"It was a loss, but no one was hurt," Horning said.