WHALLONSBURG — A large fire at 449 Angier Hill Road consumed storage barns Friday night and into Saturday morning belonging to Patrick Esposito.
Multiple fire departments responded to the call just before 8 p.m. Friday evening, and smoke and later the glow of the blaze, after darkness, could be seen a couple miles away.
Although the barns were once used for cows and goats, the property is no longer a working farm, though many items were apparently stored within the buildings, as Esposito is the proprietor of antiques emporiums in Essex and Willsboro.
Firefighters were initially concerned about unknown items that were stored within the barns that could potentially create dangerous fumes and possible explosions, but that was not the case. The wooden sides and rafters disintegrated in the conflagration, which caused the sheets of metal roofing to fall. They, in turn, had to be removed in order for firefighters to spray water on the flames that continued to burn the stored items.
Water was obtained from the Boquet River in the hamlet of Whallonsburg and trucked approximately two miles to the site, where a portable reservoir was set up.
Fire personnel and equipment from Whallonsburg, Essex, Willsboro, Reber, Wadhams, Westport, Lewis and Mineville departments responded directly to the scene.
Crews from AuSable Forks, Port Henry, Elizabethtown and Keeseville were called to stand by at nearby fire stations as a precaution.
In addition, Essex County’s Air One vehicle and Essex County investigators were also present.
According to Battalion Coordinator of Essex County Emergency Services Dan Benoit, it may take a week or more to determine the cause of the fire.
“County investigators were on scene Saturday morning doing a follow up,” Benoit said. “The cause of the fire is still under investigation.”