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Cause of haystack fire remains unknown
Fire officials may never know what caused the blaze that destroyed 150 tons of hay early Saturday morning.
The fire, which was about three miles northeast of La Grande, destroyed $31,000 worth of hay over the weekend, but La Grande Rural Fire Chief Larry Wooldridge said they most likely will not find out what caused the fire.
“We don’t know,” he said. “And likely won’t.”
He said his agency will talk with the state fire marshal’s office, but he still isn’t optimistic about getting an answer.
“Burning completely down like that we’ll probably never really know,” Wooldridge said.
The fire on McDonald Lane was reported at 12:48 a.m. Saturday. Crews from La Grande Rural and the Imbler Rural fire departments responded. By the time they arrived, the fire had spread to a nearby power pole that was quickly extinguished. The fire’s flames also ignited a small grass fire that got as close to 100 feet from a barn. That, too, was quickly extinguished.
Wooldridge said earlier this week that the hay belonged to Bingaman Farms.
The fire chief said hay can spontaneously combust when wet, so it is possible that is what happened.
“It will probably go down as an undetermined cause,” Wooldridge said.