400 piglets and 36 sows die in blaze
A farmer has described a fire at his piggery which killed 36 sows and 400 piglets as "an awful, awful disaster".
Fire crews managed to save 300 sows and 1,000 piglets but the pig farmer described the incident as "the worst disaster" his business had encountered in 25 years.
The fire on the outskirts of Strabane in Co Tyrone was spotted by a member of Hugh McReynolds' staff at 5.45am yesterday.
"The fire destroyed two farrowing houses but fire fighters managed to prevent the blaze from spreading to seven other farrowing houses. Because of that we managed to save the rest of the pigs", Mr McReynolds said.
The carcasses were removed yesterday in accordance with environmental legislation and will not be used for human consumption.
"It takes 24 weeks from the birth of a piglet before it goes to the abattoir and we won't know the financial cost for another few months," Mr McReynolds said.
Six fire engines attended the scene and investigations are ongoing into what caused the blaze.