By: Scott Larson
An Oyens, IA man woke up this morning to find his worst nightmare playing out. A fire had started in the farmer’s hog barn and the structure is a total loss. And not only did the 70 year old barn go up in flames, but all 350 feeder pigs inside also perished.
An alarm triggered inside the barn at about 2 o’clock Friday morning indicating that the temperature was too hot. This alerted the farm owner, George Dirksen, to the fire. Fire crews from Le Mars and Oyens quickly responded, but by the time they arrived the hog shelter was engulfed in flames and the building couldn’t be saved.
Oyens Fire Chief Brian Juhl helped in fighting the fire and says, “It’s always an unfortunate feat when somebody has a disaster like this and you know, you lose that many pigs…it’s hard for them. But everything that we did, we controlled the fire just the way we wanted to control it.”
We spoke with George Dirksen who estimates the value of the killed pigs at $25,000. He’s currently undecided on whether or not he will rebuild the barn.