Willard firefighters responded to two separate barn fires this week, amounting to an estimated $37,000 in combined damages, according to Joe Reiderman, assistant chief.
The first fire occurred about 6:30 p.m. Wednesday in the 1900 block of Miller Road in Norwich Township.
Firefighters were setting up for the Willard City Park fireworks display five miles away, Reiderman said.
"We could see the smoke from where we were," he said.
A couple of employees there were putting straw in the barn using a gas-powered elevator, and the underside caught fire while they were using it.
"As dry as everything has been, it pretty much went up," Reiderman said.
It took about 22,500 gallons of water to extinguish the blaze, which was contained in about 21/2 hours, Reiderman said.
Damages were estimated at $27,000, and mutual aid came from Huron River and Attica fire departments. No one was injured.
The next day just before 4 p.m. Willard Fire Department was called to another barn-type structure fire, this time in the 2900 block of Ohio 162 in Greenfield Township.
Damage to the two-story garage and barn was estimated at $10,500.
No one was injured in the fire, but about six chickens were lost.
Bales of straw behind the building caught fire from warm wood placed there after a cookout the day before, Reiderman said.
"The roof was pretty well burnt off on it," he said.