Old Landfill Fire in Bowling Green

By: Tamara Evans Email
By: Tamara Evans Email

A brush fire in Bowling Green Sunday afternoon could've turned into a hazardous situation. All nine fire departments within Warren County were called out for a field fire at an old landfill.

"I've seen worse, but not in a while," David Moyers said.

Moyers is the Assistant Chief of the Hadley Volunteer Fire Department. He was one of nearly 125 firefighters called out to a field and woods fire.

"It was pretty well involved by the time we got here," Moyers said.

But this wasn't your typical fire.

"We're on an old landfill here. It produces methane gas, and that's just another type of fuel we're not used to dealing with when it comes to brush fires,", Moyers said.

In fact, these firefighters said it wasn't the fire that had them worried. It was the methane being released from the old landfill.

"There's a lot of methane vents that are coming out releasing the methane gas from the landfill beneath us, so we had to hurry up and get the fire stopped from that, and then it proceeded into the woods which increased the difficulty of putting it back out," Barren River Fire Department Volunteer Brian Lowry said.

Had the fire gotten close enough to those vents they could've been dealing with some small explosions on the old landfill.

"It's kinda a worst case scenario. We don't really like to think about it, but it could've been much worse than it was here. We've finally been able to get a good stop on it," Lowry said.

They were able to do this by putting out some parts of the fire and building fire lines to prevent it from spreading even closer to the landfill.

"Basically taking and removing everything just down to the bare earth to prevent anymore fuel from coming in contact with the fire. Pushing trees, brush, grass - all that stuff away from the fires so it won't continue," Lowry said.

Lowery also said it is unknown at this time how the fire started and that they are in the process of investigating that.

The fire affected nearly 50 acres on and around the landfill and firefighters on the scene say this isn't the first time they've had to respond to this location. They said several years ago there was another fire near the landfill, but not of the magnitude is was on Sunday.


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