Cigarette Likely Sparked Massive Fire at Story County Farm

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STORY COUNTY, Iowa — It was a massive effort to contain a fire that broke out in a cornfield in Story County on Sunday and authorities believe it may have started with a cigarette.

The Maxwell Fire Department says a driver first spotted the fire in a ditch in rural Story County between Nevada and Maxwell. They say once crews arrived, it had already spread into the field.

It took crews from seven fire departments and three farmers with tilling equipment to settle the flames.

Crews are still investigating the cause of the fire, but they say it was likely started by a cigarette tossed from a car window.

Maxwell’s fire chief says this blaze could not have come at a worse time for the farm’s owner.

“This year with the wind and the devastation to the corn fields, we hate to see this happen that it burns or that we have to knock it down to put the fire out,” said Maxwell Fire Chief Tony Ness. 

It took crews about four hours to put the fire out. No one was hurt.

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