Long-time Alta landmark burned to the ground

Friday, August 24, 2012

The old wooden elevators belonging to Ag Partners served their purpose well - from the time they were used to store grain to the end when they served as a training tool for the 25 fire departments (152 personnel) from seven counties that controlled the burning of them on Sunday.

In visiting with people gathering to watch the burn from a distance, a definite age of the elevators could not be determined. Arne Axelson, a long-time employee at Ag Partners (and Quaker Oats and Cargill which were the earlier names of the company) estimated the structures went up in 1957 or 1958. He even recalls taking lumber (2x8 and 2x6) from the train cars and stacking it for use in the construction.

Axelson had a grand seat watching the burn. By the way, he is also a retired 41-year member of the Alta Fire Department so had two interests in the event.

The organization of the training was handled by Fire Training Consultants who shared that the fire, in full force, would be at 1,900 degrees.

The training gave all those firemen and ladies the opportunity to work as group and manage the water supply.

By the way, there were two designated areas where water was pulled from so that it did not diminish Alta's water supply.

The training lasted several hours.