Burke County authorities are investigating a barn fire that killed four horses on Friday.
Firefighters found the structure engulfed in flames when they arrived at 4:20 p.m., Jeff Icard, deputy chief of Icard Township Fire Rescue Inc., said Saturday.
The barn on Old Home Place Road near Connelly Springs, about 65 miles northwest of Charlotte, had farm equipment stored inside, along with a large quantity of hay. The four horses were in stalls.
“By the time we got there, the roof had already collapsed,” Icard said. “There was nothing anybody could do for the horses.”
About 40 firefighters from a half-dozen departments battled the blaze for 45 minutes before bringing it under control, Icard said. There were no injuries to the firefighters.
Icard said the challenge for the fire departments was water supply. Tankers shuttled in water from up to a half-mile away.
The Burke County fire marshal is investigating the cause of the fire, Icard said.