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Massive hay barn fire at dairy attracts large crowd

Popular farmgate outlet hit

Tags: Excerpts from the Windmill

LYNDEN, Washington – A massive hay barn fire at Lynden’s best known dairy farm caused some anxious moments recently as fire fighters were handicapped in battling the blaze. Fourteen fire engines and water pumpers, as well as up to 40 firefighters fought the blaze at Edaleen Dairy, a popular outlet for farmgate products owned by the Brandsma family.

General manager Duane Brandsma was relieved that his animals were not in danger. The barn was a total loss, along with two tractors and about $300.000 to $400.000 uninsured feed. The cause of the fire is not known but may have been caused by spontaneous combustion in the new hay. Firefighters could not use their aerial ladders because of low water pressure.

Area farmers watched the fire from the sidelines, ready to load up the cows if the fire could not be contained. It did not take long for some offers of help to come in to replenish feed inventory free of charge.

The Friday-night fire attracted a significant crowd of onlookers, snarling traffic on nearby roads. Brandsma commented: ”…it was like the Fourth of July with all the people coming to watch.” Edaleen processes and sells its products on the farm and through some local stores.