Fire department battles blaze for 14 hours

Patrick Fisher, Staff Writer

The New Prague Fire Department and firefighters from Montgomery, Lonsdale and New Market had a test of endurance as they battled a fire that started Monday afternoon and lasted through the early morning hours of Tuesday at Tupy & Kubes Tree Service, Inc. on Highway 19, east of New Prague.

The departments spent a total of 14 hours fighting the fire. Jim Becker, New Prague fire chief, said the cause of the fire is unknown at this time.

The department was called to the scene on two occasions after a large pile of wood chips caught fire. The department was first called around 3 p.m. Monday and fought the fire with aid from the other fire departments. Firefighters were on the scene for four hours, using a backhoe on site to move around the pile trying to extinguish the blaze.

The second call came around 12:20 a.m. Tuesday, with the same departments on site for approximately 10 hours.

The fire required the use of eight water tankers and 400,000 gallons of water.

Steve Tupy of Tupy & Kubes Tree Service said that he had remained on the site after the department left the first time, and when the fire reignited, he called the fire department.

Becker said on Tuesday, the department was decided to move the entire pile. Deutsch Construction provided a backhoe and bulldozer to move the pile, and Marv Deutsch of Deutsch Construction stayed at the site to operate the machinery.

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Suel Printing Company

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New Prague, MN 56071

Phone: 952-758-4435
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