Authorities say high winds played a major role in spreading a trash fire that eventually destroyed a hay barn near Emporia on Sunday evening.
Emporia Fire Capt. Rex Fisher says a trash fire apparently jumped to a nearby hay barn at 1633 Road "M-7," just outside Emporia, around 5:20 pm.
Fifty hay bales and the barn were destroyed.
Fisher says two horses were inside the barn when the fire started, but they were rescued by neighbors.
The property is rented by Edith Negrete, and Deputy Jody Meyers says Negrete set the trash fire. County records show Maurisio and Gloria Lara-Monreal own the property.
The fire happened shortly after high wind warnings and wind advisories expired, but also before a red flag warning ended. Red flag warnings indicate extreme fire danger due to dry, windy conditions. Fisher says residents need to be extremely careful when burning and should make sure their fires are out before leaving them unattended. Trash burns should also have a mesh screen on top of the barrel so embers can't escape.