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Fire destroys Pa. family's barn

July 10, 2003|by DON AINES

chambersburg@herald-mail.com

MERCERSBURG, Pa. - The heat from a lawn mower engine ignited a fire that destroyed a barn Wednesday afternoon in Montgomery Township, Pa., according to one of the owners.

The fire at the Rohart Farm, 8069 Corner Road, was called in at 3:51 p.m., according to Franklin County Emergency Communications.

Robert Hartung Jr., who owns the farm with his brother, Thomas, and father Robert Hartung Sr., said a family member had pulled the lawn mower into the barn and it caught some hay on fire.

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"This one collapsed this winter and we just rebuilt it," said Kathy Hartung, Robert Hartung Sr.'s wife.

The aluminum farm building contained hay in three of its four bays and a machine shop in the fourth. Kathy Hartung said a tractor, two wagons and the lawn mower were in the shed, in addition to tools and other equipment.

"The tractor looks like it's salvageable," she said.

Along with firefighters from the Mercersburg Montgomery Peters and Warren Fire Co., personnel and equipment from fire companies in Greencastle, McConnellsburg and Waynesboro, Pa., along with Maugansville and Halfway responded.

Tanker trucks from several companies ferried water to the scene, which was several hundred yards off Corner Road.

Firefighters were still on the scene at 7:25 p.m.

Additional information was unavailable Wednesday night.

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