7 °CSun, 09

BLAZE RAVAGES FARM PROPERTY

HUNDREDS of thousands of pounds worth of farm equipment was destroyed and livestock perished in what police are treating as an arson attack on a farm between Ederney and Irvinestown.

Forensic experts have examined the area of the blaze at a large shed at the isolated farm located in the townland of Mullinroddy, approximately half a mile off the main road.

The building housed a cow and two 10-day old twin calves as well as high value farm equipment, including four Massey Ferguson tractors and a JCB loader. Sadly the animals died as a result of the fire and the equipment was completely destroyed.

The Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service confirmed it had five appliances, a water tanker and a command support unit at the scene of the incident. The immediate scene was still sealed off by police earlier this week with tape erected.

Owners Desmond Knox and his son, David, who farm suckler cattle, were devastated by what had happened. Mr Knox, senior, was on holiday in England when the incident happened on Wednesday night last. Sadly on his return home he will be met with a devastating sight.

Speaking to the Tyrone Constitution on Monday afternoon David Knox revealed he had left the farm on the night in question at 9pm and was alerted at 11pm that their property was on fire.

"The shed, which is 129 x 30 at the back and 90 x 30 at the front, had four Massey Ferguson tractors, a JCB loader, a cow, twin calves as well as straw and turf.  When I came on the scene it was an inferno from one end to the other. The fire service was alerted at 11.02pm and they left it around 3.30am and it's still smouldering today – nearly a week later. Everything has been gutted. I estimate there's been hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of damage done."

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