Dunsmoor Farms Employee Provides Insight to Cause of Massive Fire

Photo Credit: Rick Grosvent
Dunsmoor Farms fire, Jan. 2, 2016.

OSWEGO, NY – Dunsmoor Farms is looking to recoup after a massive fire destroyed the onion farm’s warehouse building Saturday (Jan 2) night.

Multiple crews responded to the fire at 7965 Route 104 in the town of Oswego after a call was made that explosions could be heard from the farm.

While official fire investigators have yet to determine the cause of the fire, one employee provided his own insight as to what caused the devastating blaze to start.

“The fire started from our work truck that was getting fixed. There was an oil leak in it with a few minor things wrong. There was a spark in the motor and started the fire which no one knew about, so the truck exploded. My boss went to check it out and one part of the building was on fire. So, when the fire department showed to put it out they used water which made it worse and in our building there are about a dozen fans or more to keep the onions cold, so when they opened up the doors the fire broke lose,” explained Joel Soto-Gonzalez, a seasonal employee with Dunsmoor Farms for a few years.

While the initial calls for emergency respondents noted sounds of explosions, Gonzalez claims they were from the propane tanks within the warehouse for the fork lifts.

Current owner of Dunsmoor Farms, Joe Burkhart resides in the home next to the building that caught ablaze, according to Gonzalez. However, he expresses that the house sustained minor damage with only smoke damage to one side of the house along with a few broken windows.

As for the building itself, “the Dunsmoor Farms building is gone, there’s nothing left to it,” said Gonzalez.

Fire fighter for Granby Center Fire Department, Rick Grosvent helped battle the blaze and confirms that 21 departments and 39 total apparatuses were needed to extinguish the fire.

“It took over four hours to knock it down. It will still burn for days deep inside,” he added.

For now, Dunsmoor Farms will focus on continuing production as best as possible at the County Route 53 location until their main location is back up and running, says Gonzalez.

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  1. All responders should be proud of the awesome job they did!
    While the freezing temperatures kept most of us inside, these
    people were there working in the bitter cold to put this fire
    out … I am sorry for the loss of the business but I am glad
    to hear that nobody was injured … Best Wishes to the owners
    and congratulations to the responders …

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