Firefighters battle blaze at Berry Brothers Lumber

Updated: Apr. 27, 2021 at 5:14 PM EDT
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TOWN OF LORRAINE, N.Y. (WWNY) - Firefighters battled a blaze at a Jefferson County business Tuesday afternoon.

Volunteers were called to Berry Brothers Lumber on Route 11 in the town of Lorraine at approximately 2:30 p.m.

“I turned around and I looked up here and I saw a black pillar of smoke and I said, ‘Aw, this is not good,’” said Lee Berry, owner.

Early pictures showed thick black smoke could be seen from a distance. However, firefighters were able to quickly douse the flames.

The blaze caused minor damage to the building, but the grinding equipment is what got the brunt of it.

Bob Simpson of the Adams Fire Department said crews stayed on scene for another couple of hours to make sure the fire didn’t flare up again.

“When we got here, there was open fire, but that was knocked out very quickly. Now we’re going through the overhaul phase which is where we actually dig through the stuff and find all the hotspots,” said Simpson.

No injuries were reported.

A portion of Route 11 was closed to traffic for a few hours, Simpson said.

This isn’t the first fire for Berry Brothers. According to our archives, the lumber business has had at least 4 fires since the mill was built in 1947.

The most recent blazes were in 2013 and 2008.

Berry Brothers makes mulched wood for animal bedding for around 30 local farms.

Simpson said the business has frequently had fires because of the nature of the work.

Berry said if all goes well, he’s hoping to be back up and running by the end of this week.

“I don’t think you ever expect it to happen, but we are in a really high-risk industry; obviously very flammable product. So, it’s a bad combination and unfortunately sometimes these things happen,” said Berry.

Fire at Berry Brothers Lumber
Fire at Berry Brothers Lumber(WWNY)
Fire at Berry Brothers Lumber
Fire at Berry Brothers Lumber(WWNY)

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