The Faribault Fire Department reports 5:50 this morning they were dispatched along with Rice County Sheriff's Deputies and North Memorial Ambulance to a vehicle on fire inside a building at 25475 Cabot Avenue.  The call came in as a tractor-trailer inside the Jennie-O Turkey Store Feed Mill was on fire.

All employees were evacuated according to Faribault Fire Chief Dustin Dienst prior to Faribault Fire personnel arriving.  Dienst says, "Upon our arrival we were faced with a fully engulfed cab and engine compartment of the tractor that was entirely inside the structure.

He added, "Crew worked hard to access the fire which was under the hood and inside the cab.  Firefighters worked with staff to verify utility control for the area involved.  Two fans were set up to remove smoke from the loading area of the feed mill.  Dean's Towing was contacted to pull the tractor out of the loading bay."

"Once the tractor was removed from the structure a thorough overhaul of the structure was performed.  Two small fires burning on accumulated dust were located and extinguished during overhaul."

Dienst says, "The tractor was completely destroyed, the trailer was undamaged and the building appeared to sustain only minor damage.  Crews cleared the scene approximately 8:25 a.m."

The Faribault Fire Chief says they spoke with the driver and employees who witnessed the event.  "They stated they heard a small boom in the loading bay and looked to see what was going on.  They saw flames coming out from under the engine compartment of the tractor.  The driver of the tractor-trailer stated the vehicle was running fine and had no idea why the fire started."

The semi tractor fire will be documented as a failure of equipment.

Dienst concluded, "Thankfully nobody was standing near the vehicle when the fire started.  Employees acted fast by calling 911 and evacuating the building quickly.  The design of the building and materials used to construct this facility played an important role in limiting fire damage."

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