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Amazing Property in Lakeville! 5707 Big Tree Rd
AVON – A wide-ranging forest fire tore through a large patch of woodland between Pole Bridge Road, Papermill Road, Avon Geneseo Road and Triphammer Road on a quiet, calm Wednesday evening, scorching the earth, underbrush, and large trees for about a square mile of terrain that was only accessible on foot and by all-terrain vehicles (ATV’s).
The fire, which was much larger than the original emergency caller thought as they casually rode by on horseback, never crawled near any structures or injured anyone, but burned right up to the railroad tracks between Avon-Geneseo Road and Pole Bridge Road near Triphammer Falls, prompting a highly efficient joint-effort by six fire departments, two county fire bureaus, the Livingston County Sheriff’s Office, State Police, Livonia-Avon-Lakeville Railroad, and an employee working for the local farmer.
“We were just riding our ATV’s along here and we saw the smoke,” said local resident Kathy Harrison, 57, after tipping off the State Trooper on scene that the fire was more widespread than initially thought. “We thought we had better take a look at what was going on so we walked over and whoa, there’s flame right up to the tracks about 500 yards from here!”
From about 5:30 p.m. past 9 p.m., firefighters hunted through the woods, thoroughly swatting out flames in the leaves with brooms, spraying logs with water from hand-pumped water guns called ‘Indian packs,’ cutting back brush with chain saws, and sawing open hollow trees to spray the insides as they slowly smoldered from within.
Firefighters had to use the railroad tracks to carry teams with Indian packs to the fire by ATV, and according to a railroad worker with Livonia-Avon-Lakeville Railroad who arrived on scene, the train which was scheduled to run through at 8:30 p.m. with a load of farming goods like sugar and wheat had to be delayed.
Northbound traffic on Pole Bridge Road was closed. An employee of the farmer working the surrounding fields volunteered the help of his large tractor to firefighters in getting their vehicles through difficult terrain.
No injury or property damage occurred as a result of the fire, but smoke could clearly be seen rising from the woods from Avon-Geneseo Road.
No cause has yet been cited for the blaze, but firefighters estimate that the woods had been burning for an hour or more before the passerby called 911.
Firefighters with East Avon, Livonia, Caledonia, Rush, Honeyoe Falls, and Geneseo fire departments responded to the scene, alongside Avon Ambulance, representatives from the Livingston County and Monroe County Fire Bureaus, Forest Rangers, Livingston County Sheriff’s Office, and State Police, with East Avon Assistant Fire Chief Jeff Faugh in command.
PHOTO CAPTION: (Photos/Conrad Baker)