Highway 61 traffic impacted for seven hours after hay bales catch fire near Ogallala
OGALLALA, Neb. -- Highway 61 was closed off after a hay truck caught fire in Keith County.
The Ogallala Volunteer Fire Department and Keystone-Lemoyne Fire Department received reports from emergency management officials of the blaze Thursday afternoon.
The OVFD posted on Facebook that a semi-truck with 42 round bales of hay caught on fire on Highway 61 in the canyons next to the Lake McConaughy Visitor's Center.
Mutual aid was requested from Brule, Paxton, and Big Springs as well as Nebraska Game and Parks, Keith County Sheriff's Office, Nebraska State Patrol, Nebraska Department of Transportation, Hi-Line Co-op, in addition to local residents using private equipment.
Firemen reported that the incident quickly became complex due to the weather and location. The highway was closed off and traffic was redirected for about seven hours.
Crews kept fire contained to the area on the highway and kept it out of the canyons and pasture ground near the visitors center.
Firemen reported having to unload and tear apart the bails, reportedly burying the smoldering hay.
There was one civilian injury reported due to a fall. No firefighters were injured.
"Through diligence and exemplary teamwork by all the agencies involved, the situation was resolved with no extension from the immediate area and no firefighter injuries," OVFD said in a Facebook post late Thursday night.