SAN FRANCISCO TOWNSHIP, Minn. (WCCO) — More than 100 animals, mostly cows, were killed in a barn fire in San Francisco Township early Tuesday morning.

According to Belle Plaine Fire Chief Todd Otto, farm staffers were on their way to milk the cows early in the morning when they spotted flames.

Crews were dispatched to the farm at 182nd Street. The barn was about three-quarters engulfed when they arrived.

Crews said that there were about 105 dead animals found inside the barn, including 70 dead calves and 1 adult cow. They were able to get about a dozen cows out of the barn alive. Overall, the farm keeps about 500 dairy cows.

Fire chief Todd Otto says it was an expensive fire.

“We’re estimating right around $100,000 to $200,000 (in losses) just for the animals. And then the structure is going to be a loss, too,” said Otto.

NewsRadio 830 WCCO’s Steve Murphy Reports

Otto says it’s not the first such fire at that location.

“This is the second barn they’ve lost in the same location in the past 12 to 14 years,” added Otto.

The farm’s owners were not home at the time of the fire, as they were out on vacation.

No firefighters were injured in the incident.


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