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Pig barn fire north of Ferndale sparked by overturned heat lamp

FERNDALE — A heat lamp got knocked over in a barn on Vista Drive late Tuesday, Feb. 5, sparking a fire that destroyed the building and left one pig dead, according to firefighters.

The farm owner had suspended heat lamps above a sleeping area the barn, in the 6700 block of Vista, to keep about 10 piglets and two grown pigs warm in the freezing weather, said Fire District 7 Asst. Chief Larry Hoffman.

Temperatures sank into the low 20s Tuesday.

A dog started barking around 11:45 p.m. The man went outside to find a fire in the barn. Wind whipping on the dry straw stoked the flames, Hoffman said.

All of the pigs but one of the older ones made it out. No other animals were trapped inside. Firefighters suspect one of the pigs jostled the lamp and knocked it onto the hay. The 40-by-60-foot building and its contents — mostly tools and small farm equipment, but no tractors — couldn't be saved.

Hoffman estimated the total loss at $50,000.

The home was about 50 feet away and wasn't in danger of catching fire.

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