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Bombay fire fires back

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MALONE - A shotgun round discharged during a hay barn fire in Bombay Tuesday night, sending pellets into the leg of one of the working assistant fire chiefs and sending him to the hospital.

“He took a few BBs in the leg,” said Bombay Fire Chief Mike Dufrane, who went on to say Assistant Fire Chief Tom Oakes had been taken to the hospital to get checked and had already been released by 8:30 p.m.. “The chances of getting hit — there were other people standing around him and nobody else got hit.”

The shell had apparently been left in the barn and discharged when heat from the blaze ignited the gunpowder inside it.

The fire, which occurred at a hay and lumber storage barn on Irish Ridge Road, was called in at 3:57 p.m., and was under control or “knocked down” within a half hour of the fire companies responding, said Mr. Dufrane. An ambulance from Fort Covington was dispatched for Mr. Oakes and firefighters remained on call until 7:05 p.m.

“There was so much hay there that it was basically trying to wet everything down,” said Mr. Dufrane. “You could sit there all night long and put water on it and you still wouldn’t put it out.”

Mr. Dufrane praised the Franklin County mutual aid system, especially because of the 7-degree temperature firefighters worked in Tuesday night. Another hand is always welcome when firefighters get wet and frozen and need to take a break, he said.

Moira, Fort Covington, Dickinson, Westville, Brushton, Hogansburg/Akwesasne were called to the fire for mutual aid, many providing extra tankers.

The cause of the fire had not been determined Tuesday night.

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