LONG ISLAND, Kan. (KSNW) – A north central Kansas hog farm is busy cleaning up debris from a fire that burned one worker and killed almost 9,000 pigs.
The fire happened on Tuesday at Husky Hogs in Long Island and it leveled three farrowing barns. Around 2,000 sows and 7,000 piglets were killed in the fire, but with the help of fire crews and the community, more than 4,000 sows were saved.
Julia Nelson, a spokeswoman for Husky Hogs, said three barns were fully engulfed in flames.
“At one point it looked like, probably one hour into the fire, I spoke to one of the managers and he wasn’t sure if we would be able to save anything,” said Nelson.
It took firefighters about four hours to control the blaze, and by Wednesday, employees were back to work.
“They had 190 pigs born yesterday, so they are keeping the current health of all the new baby pigs and all the moms,” added Nelson.
Aside from regular operations, crews are busy cleaning up debris from the fire, including separating building materials and animal remains.
“We’ll still have to rebuild the barns that were destroyed, and then obviously, purchase new breeding stock,” noted Nelson. “All that just takes time. It’s not an instant back up to production.”
Company officials do not yet know what caused the fire, but the state fire marshal is conducting an investigation. Officials said the financial loss is around $1-5 million, but that could change as they continue the cleanup process.