BY Ryan Ledendecker, The Western JournalJanuary 29, 2023
1 year ago

Massive Fire Sweeps Egg Farm, 16 Fire Departments Needed to Contain It

A three-alarm fire at a Bozrah, Connecticut-based egg farm required more than 100 firefighters from at least 16 nearby firehouses to extinguish.

According to WTIC-TV, authorities said the fire, which plagued a 50' x 600' chicken coop at Hillandale Farms on Schwartz Road, took 4.5 hours to extinguish and resulted in the death of an estimated 100,000 chickens.

Fortunately, there were no injuries sustained by firefighters or farm workers.

Images of the massive egg farm blaze emerged across social media. One witness said smoke from the chicken coop fire could be seen from miles away.

#BREAKING: Multiple firefighters are battling a massive fire at a egg farm #Bozrah #Connecticut Multiple fire departments are responding to a massive three alarm fire at Hillendale Farms where thousands of chickens produce eggs with thick smoke can be seen miles away," one Twitter user wrote.

"Bozrah Ct, tanker 126, arrives 2nd due, as heavy smoke and fire runs the cockloft of a commercial barn. The went to a 3rd alarm with several tanker taskforces and draft sites," NLCFirePhotos tweeted.

[firefly_poll]

A group of Salvation Army volunteers were on-scene, ensuring first responders had plenty to eat and drink as they battled the blaze.

"EDS UPDATE: The Salvation Army's New London canteen currently responding to 3-alarm fire in Bozrah, CT. Fire consumed a large chicken coop farm. Over 25 fire dept. from Eastern Connecticut on scene. The EDS team serving hot dogs, snacks and hydration to fire crews. #EDS"," the Salvation Army's Southern New England Division Twitter account wrote.

Local news outlets' reports indicated that it's unclear how the fire started. However, WTIC-TV noted that the Town of Bozrah Fire Marshal will launch an investigation.

The egg farm fire comes at the same time many Americans are paying steep prices for eggs at the grocery store, that is, if they can find them.

Earlier in January, the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicated in its Consumer Price Index report for December that the cost of eggs was one of the leading drivers of the increase in the food index. The BLS data showed eggs increased 59.9 percent year over year and saw an 11.1 percent jump from November.

According to CNBC, one farm group has blamed the soaring egg costs on a "collusive scheme" by major egg suppliers. It has gone as far as asking the Federal Trade Commission to investigate the allegations.

In a letter to FTC Chair Lina Khan, a farmer's advocacy group called Farm Action asked the FTC chief to investigate any "foul play" among major egg suppliers. The group claims suppliers might have hatched a scheme during the Avian Flu outbreak to "extract egregious profits reaching as high as 40 percent."

Others, like Amy Smith, vice president at Advanced Economic Solutions, said the egg supply shortages and high prices are "a perfect storm of stuff that came together."

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

Written by: Ryan Ledendecker, The Western Journal

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