Fire leaves a barn in Scio Township a total loss

By Lonnie Huhman,

Multiple fire departments responded to a fire near White Lotus Farms in Scio Township that ended up seeing a barn totally destroyed.

Scio Township Fire Chief Doug Armstrong said the Scio department was dispatched to the fire around 4:40 p.m. on April 15. The barn is not owned by White Lotus Farms, but it was basically located near the middle of White Lotus, which is at 7217 W. Liberty Road.

Armstrong said there were no reported injuries. He said the barn had been used as a workshop with a living quarters and home attached to it. He said there was someone inside the home that was unaware of the fire, but a neighbor alerted that person to the fire with a knock at the door.

That person was able to get out safely with pets in tow.

Armstrong said the barn was a large structure and although there is no cause at this point, it appears it may have started in there. The cause is being investigated.

The fire also caused significant damage to the home attached to it, according to Armstrong, and threatened the neighboring structures. One of these structures is a White Lotus barn, which saw some damage, but was able to be saved by firefighters.

Armstrong said the intensity of the fire led Scio to call for support from neighboring departments. In the end, the firefighters were on the scene until after midnight.

Scio was helped by the departments from Dexter, Chelsea, Manchester, Hamburg and Putnam Townships, Saline as well as Pittsfield, Northfield and Ann Arbor Townships. At the same time as the barn fire, the city of Ann Arbor Fire Department took on a stove fire also in Scio Township.

Armstrong said the support was needed and appreciated. The fire needed a lot of water and with few quickly accessible hydrants in that more rural location, the department needed extra support from as many other water pumper trucks that were able to get there.

He said the response demonstrates the importance of mutual aid and cooperation. With Scio directing the incident command at the scene, the departments were able to work together in an organized fashion.

“We’re grateful for the response from all of the neighboring departments,” Armstrong said. “They got here quickly and worked hard.”

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