Fire officials say as many as 32 horses possibly died in a massive barn fire overnight Saturday at a popular stable between Crystal Lake and Woodstock, reports Northwest Herald.
Fire officials said preliminary estimated damage including the value of the horses lost could be more than $1 million.
A family member at the stable at 5116 Mt. Thabor Road, in unincorporated Woodstock reported a barn fire at Valley View Acres at 10:43 p.m. The caller described a crackling sound neat the area of the stables, Crystal Lake Fire Rescue District officials said.
The first firefighters arrived on scene at 10:53 p.m. and reported heavy smoke and fire coming from a large, T-shaped stable. Because of a lake of fire hydrants in the area, Crystal Lake activated a Mutual Aid Box Alarm System. More than a dozen area departments rendered aid.
Fire officials said they were able to get the fire under control at 12:30 a.m. Sunday. The owner of the stable said there were up to 37 horses in the stable and five were found after the fire in a nearby field.
Investigators will continue to work on determining the exact number of horses that perished as well as on finding the cause of the fire. The cause, as of early Sunday morning, remained unknown.
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