• L&T staff report
The hay bale fire and subsequent grass fires are under control – for now – in Moscow. According to a report by KSCB radio, Stevens County Fire Chief Darroll Munson said the situation is continuing to be monitored. KSCB cited a report by the Garden City Telegram that Munson said depending on wind conditions, it could take as long as seven days to completely extinguish.
Firefighters have been battling the blaze since late Tuesday night at Bartlett Grain Co., located on the northern edge of Moscow.
The Telegram reported, “… winds subsided Thursday morning, but prior to that, Munson said residents were advised to evacuate their homes.”
When the wind switched out of the north around 3 a.m. Thursday, Munson said they suggested it might not be a bad idea, because of smoke, for people to evacuate homes in northern Moscow.
The evacuation was not mandatory and was lifted at 9 a.m., the report added.
According to Munson, some of the hay bales belonged to Abengoa Bionergy while others belong to Cattle Empire. As of Thursday, he said, 51,000 bales had been lost.
Monson also reported there were 17 stacks, and there were 3,000 bales per stack. These were corn stalks, milo stalks — dry product. Cattle Empire lost several alfalfa bales.
Firefighters from Morton, Grant, Finney, Haskell and Seward counties responded to the scene to provide assistance.
The report noted Munson said the cause of the fire is still under investigation.