TEDIOUS WORK: It takes a lot of time to put out a hay fire. Picture: DALE WEBSTER
TEDIOUS WORK: It takes a lot of time to put out a hay fire. Picture: DALE WEBSTER

150 bales lost to Southern Downs fire

MORE than 150 hay bales were involved in a major fire at an Elbow Valley property last night.

A large hay stack ignited around 5.30pm and three crews and one water tanker were called to Barlows Gate Rd shortly thereafter.

A spokesman for the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services said extinguishing hay fires can be time-consuming, tedious work because crews must pull each bale apart to douse with water.

“The burn internally for a long time and the only way to get it out is to continuously pull it apart,” he said.

“Otherwise it can reignite.

“It takes a lot of water.”

The owner worked hard to assist the crews and manned an excavator in his efforts to separate the bales.

Unfortunately, most of the feed was lost to burning, smoke or foam contamination, according to the spokesman.

“But at that stage the main aim was to prevent the silage pit from catching alight,” he said.

“They didn’t want the fire to get there.”

The fire was successfully prevented from spreading to the silage pit and crews left the scene just before 9pm.

The cause of the fire was not determined.