Archive » July 9, 2009
VEGETATION FIRE BURNS IN SANTA YNEZ
By Lauren Crecelius, Staff Writer
Spontaneous combustion is suspected as the cause of the manure-and-stall-shavings fire that erupted July 7 at the Magali Farms on Casey Ave. in Santa Ynez.
Four engines, a water tender, bulldozer, helicopter and dozens of firefighters battled the smelly blaze, which, though it was not very dangerous, did take several hours to put out.
Captain David Sadecki, public information officer with the Fire Department, said the half-acre sized pile of shavings, manure and hay was about one to four feet deep, and the firefighters had to create a fire line to keep it from spreading to surrounding agricultural land. The helicopter dumped water five times over the area.
“It’s not uncommon for this type of situation to be caused by spontaneous combustion,” Sadecki said, adding that the cause was still under investigation.
Jose Munoz works on Magali Farms and said the fire started as a few small spots in the shavings, and several ranch workers tried to douse it with the sprinkler system.
When it grew larger, they called the Fire Department.
The fire, which some firefighters called, “the poop fire” due to its tinder, bellowed large clouds of white smoke out over Santa Ynez, though there were not many high flames.
Captain Mitch Read was one of the first men to respond to the fire and said though it would take a lot of work to put out, it was not near any structures or homes.
For a shavings fire, though, it was big and did require a lot of equipment.
“It’s really low for one thing,” he said. “It’ll just take a lot of water and manpower, but it’s not really a big threat.”
Reach Lauren Crecelius at firstname.lastname@example.org.