A fairly new Northeast Iowa egg facility is destroyed, plus thousands of birds killed, in an overnight fire near Charles City.


Firefighters were initially called out at about 5pm Monday, to the Zoetis facility, just west of Charles City, where a blaze had started in one of the buildings that contained egg-laying chickens.

Photo from Charles City Police Department

Fire crews from at least 8 area departments responded, but could not save the building. Several thousand chickens perished in the fire.

Firefighters were hampered by high winds, and a lack of fire hydrants. One crew member sustained a minor injury, otherwise no one else was hurt.

After leaving at about 11pm, fire crews returned at 12:30am this morning to handle flare-ups and hot spots.

The cause of the blaze appears to be a faulty electrical wire, according to officials. Monetary damages are estimated at around 3 million dollars.

The Zoetis plant had just opened in March of this year.