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Young - Large silo fire threatens piggery

Published: 16th March 2010

At 9.50 am on Tuesday 16 March, Fire Rescue Officers were called to a Silo fire at a piggery located on Moppity Road, approximately 7 kilometres from the township of Young in the states southern region. The silo measured 8 metres in height and was filled with 100 tons of wheat grain feed and was located within a complex of five silos. There was evidence of an internal smouldering fire and there were fears of an explosion. As a precaution an 800 metre exclusion zone was established. Senior Hazmat technicians and the Brigade Scientific Officer were flown from Sydney by FireAir1 helicopter to take charge of the long operation. After extensive sampling and heat readings it was eventually decided to flood the silo with copious amounts of water and then extract the grain from the silo. During the operation, firefighters entered the explosion zone to provide feed and watering to 50,000 livestock contained within a series of sheds adjacent to the silos. The operation proceeded throughout the day and over night. The area was declared safe on Thursday morning.