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Thousands of pigs killed in Saskatchewan farm fire

The Rosetown Fire Department arrived at the farm owned by Quebec-based Olymel to find it engulfed in flame.
The Rosetown Fire Department arrived at the farm owned by Quebec-based Olymel to find it engulfed in flame. Darrell Morrison / CKOM - Supplied

Thousands of pigs were killed in a fire on June 1 near Rosetown, Sask.

The Rosetown Fire Department arrived at the farm owned by Quebec-based Olymel to find it engulfed in flame.

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Firefighters said they were initially turned away by a company employee when they arrived.

A company spokesperson said they don’t know why that happened.

Roughly 12,000 pigs died in the fire.

“This horrific barn fire, which claimed the lives of 12,000 innocent pigs, is the latest addition to a long list of fires that occur regularly throughout Canada. It is not an isolated incident. They happen all the time – in Ontario alone, where on-farm fires are tracked best, there are well over 100 barn fires each year – primarily because barns are not required by law to have basic safety features such as sprinklers and industrial-grade smoke detectors. HSI/Canada calls on decision-makers to finally take barn fire prevention seriously, and stop the needless suffering of countless animals. For these senseless tragedies to finally end, the next edition of the National Farm Building Code must require farmers to install fire safety equipment and develop comprehensive fire safety plans,” Riana Topan, campaign manager – farm animals, Humane Society International/Canada said.

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The company estimates damage to be in the millions of dollars.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.