Thousands of chicks escaped a fire in a chicken house just west of New Market early on Monday afternoon because of their quick-thinking owner. Only about one or two of the 19,000 chicks in the building died in the fire, said Lt. Richard Funkhouser, of the Shenandoah County Department of Fire and Rescue. No people were injured.
When the fire was noticed, the homeowner, Roger Martin, opened another section of the structure so the birds could escape the flames. Funkhouser said Martin saw smoke coming out of the chicken house when he stepped outside to check the mail.
Most of the fire had been extinguished by Martin and others by the time Fire and Rescue responded to the scene at 664 Academy Road just after 12:30 p.m., Funkhouser said.
Funkhouser said it took just a few minutes to get the fire under control and firefighters opened the roof in places to get at a few remaining hot spots. The fire is believed to have been caused by an electrical malfunction.
Damage to the building’s roof is estimated at about $8,000.
Contact Kassondra Cloos at 574-6290 or firstname.lastname@example.org