On June 24, 2016, the Westport (MA) Fire Department received a call for a barn fire. Friends and family of the owners were able to remove approximately 30 young cows from the barn. First arriving apparatus found the barn well involved. Initial efforts to save several nearby structures including the owner’s home were successful due to the efforts of the Westport firefighters. “Without a municipal water supply in the area, the crews needed to use the initial water carried on the engines to keep the exposed buildings cool until a more reliable water supply could be established,” said Deputy Chief Allen Manley. Mutual aid companies from all over Bristol County and neighboring Rhode Island were called to assist with shuttling water from the nearby Westport River. A large store of fertilizer was a concern and the State HazMat Team was called to provide air quality monitoring. The fertilizer was allowed to burn off rather than risk impacting ground water and the river. The Department of Environmental Protection was also call to the scene to monitor the runoff. Assisting were: Tiverton; Fall River; Dartmouth Districts 1, 2, and 3; Little Compton; Lakeville; Somerset; Rehoboth; Middletown; and Portsmouth. Fall River Special Services worked with Westport Emergency Management to provide rehab.
– Submitted by Allen N. Manley, Jr., Deputy Fire Chief