Thursday, 14 November 2013

Twenty tonnes of hay involved in third barn fire in two days

East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service has spent the night at the scene of a barn fire in Alfriston.

We were called out at 18.32 on 13 November 2013 to a farm in Whiteway.

There were reports a barn had caught alight and there was livestock inside.

On arrival the crew found that twenty tonnes of hay was being stored in the building.

The cattle had been led to safety by the owner.

Crews removed a CO2 extinguisher and a number of petrol cannisters.

Six breathing apparatus were used, along with foam and water.

The incident involved firefighters and officers from Seaford, Newhaven, Eastbourne, Uckfield and Lewes.

As of 08.00 crews remain at the scene.

Further information about the previous fires can be found here.

Safety advice

Farmers are again being urged to check their fire safety measures, as this is the third barn fire in two days in East Sussex.

Farmers are required by law, under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, to carry out a fire risk assessment of their farm buildings. Find out more at

If you are a farmer you may also want to consider the following:
  • Hay and straw should be removed from the field as soon as possible after harvesting.
  • Are you storing it separately from other buildings, particularly those housing fuels, agrochemicals and machinery? Is in stacks of reasonable size, spaced at least ten metres apart? It is stored separately from livestock housing?
  • Have you ensured that petrol, diesel and other fuels are stored in secure areas and storage tank outlets are padlocked?
  • Are you keeping your fertilisers and pesticides under lock and key?
  • Have you recently checked that open water supplies are being properly maintained for firefighting?
  • Are you disposing of refuse safely and on a regular basis?
  • When did you last check unoccupied areas on your farm? Are they safe and secure? Have you made sure there is no unnecessary accumulation of combustible materials?
  • If you allow visitors or camping on your farm, ensure all barbecues are properly supervised and do not allow the lighting of open fires on the property. Make sure you only allow camping and picnicking in selected areas.
  • Have you checked that Fire Danger warning signs are in place?

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