Fire investigators couldn’t rule out spontaneous heating as a cause for a fire that destroyed a Ridgefield barn and 140 tons of hay Wednesday morning.
The official cause of the blaze, however, is undetermined, Clark County Deputy Fire Marshal Susan Anderson said.
Firefighters were called to 23117 N.W. Hillhurst Road just after 2 a.m. and arrived to find a 150-foot-by-80-foot hay barn well-involved in fire.
Other buildings and farm equipment scattered about the 80-plus-acre property were in danger of also being damaged by the flames, including an adjacent barn full of cows.
Crews from five fire agencies worked for about 45 minutes to get the flames under control, keeping it from spreading to any other buildings. Firefighters then stayed on the scene for more than 12 hours to make sure that all of the hot spots in the hay were completely out.
No cows were injured in the fire.
The barn was worth an estimated $135,000, and inside the barn was about 140 tons of hay, which was worth an estimated $21,000, Anderson said.