Farmers' Livelihood Affected by Stapleton Blaze

By: Dan Koob Email
By: Dan Koob Email

The fire that raged through forty square miles of land in North-Western Nebraska will cost farmers millions of dollars in lost crops.

The final numbers are still being calculated, but despite the monetary losses farmers are about to endure, most people in the area are thankful to be alive in the aftermath.

"Even though we lost some bales, some grain bins I feel fortunate," said Rex Hannah, a local landowner who owns five hundred acres worth of land 1.5 miles outside of Stapleton.

Firefighters worked well into the afternoon on Wednesday, trying to slow the smoldering bales of hay that were still lit on the property.

400 acres of his land, burnt up in the fire.

"We might have to sell cows if we can't use the pasture. We just have to wait for it to rebuild itself. There will be a lot of rebuilding to do with our fences. Just have to rebuild. That's all we can do right now," he said.

The ash could be smelled as far south as North Platte.

Community Emergency Manager Rich Cook said 80 thousand acres were burned up just in Logan County alone.

They are concerned that because of high winds and an extended drought in the area, that a another combine spark could start a fire.

"Combine fires happen, there's not much you can do about that. Just try to get the fire department on the scene as quick as possible," said Rich Cook.

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