Every Horse Owners Nightmare-Essex Fire Kills 15 horses

The fire started late on Sunday night
Credit : David Shaw via BBC

Monday 04 December - 20h17 | Lulu Kyriacou

Every Horse Owners Nightmare-Essex Fire Kills 15 horses

Last night in Burnham-on-Couch, Essex, England, the livery owners of Elmwood Equestrian Centre had their worse nightmares realised when the stables caught fire, with some of the horses unable to be rescued in time.

The Essex police force are treating the fire as suspicious, meaning there is a good possibility that the fire was started deliberately. Although passers-by who saw the fire managed to relase many of the horses and ponies in adjoining stables and barns, according to yard owner David Shaw the ones in the main shed  "had no chance".  Seven fire engines with crew attended the scene but sadly by the time they arrived the main barn was already close to collapse with up to 15 horses still inside. Despite heroic efforts, they were unable to save them before the roof caved in.

​Although barn fires are infortunately common in the USA, in the UK they are comparatively rare and one on this scale is unorecedented.  Approximatley 70 horses live on the site where owners can rent stables so the toll could have been worse but never the less it has left the community in general shocked, mainly by the inference that the blaze was started deliverately.  A crowd funding page has been set up  to help with the expenses of the surviving horses, some of which have got significant injury and are without vital equipment, all of which burnt in the fire.  initially hoping to raise £2500 pounds, the fund is already close to £7000.

​Such a disaster will also serve as a reminder to horse owners that you can never take enough fire and security precautions around their stables.

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