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Lightning stike ignites pole barn in Chambersburg, Pa.

October 10, 2007|By DON AINES

CHAMBERSBURG, PA. - A lightning strike from a fast-moving storm ignited a pole barn filled with hay Tuesday evening, but most of the building was saved by firefighters.

"It was a real loud lightning strike ... The instant I looked at the building, I could see flames coming from the peak," said Lynn Eberly, owner of Mount Pleasant Farm at 2071 Mount Pleasant Road.

The fire was called in at 6:45 p.m., said Fayetteville Volunteer Fire Co. Deputy Chief Bob Monn. He agreed lightning was the likely cause of the fire because the building did not have electrical service.

The open front barn had about 200 tons of hay in it, Eberly said as he waited for a front-end loader to empty out the smoking hay. The fire damage appeared to be limited to the south side of the building where the metal roof was partially collapsed.

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A ladder truck was pouring water onto the hay as tanker trucks shuttled up and down the road to augment the water supply from a hydrant.

The fire drew firefighters from Franklin, Cumberland and Adams counties. Fayetteville was assisted by units from the Franklin, New Franklin, West End Shippensburg, Vigilant Hose, Walnut Bottom, Goodwill, Marion, Mont Alto and Buchanan Valley fire companies, the Letterkenny Army Depot Fire Department and the Franklin County Air Unit, Monn said.

Firefighters were still at the scene at 10:20 p.m.

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