AMHERST, Mass. (WWLP) – A fire started by a bolt of lightning burned down multiple buildings at a farm in Amherst on Friday. Now, their rebuilding process is getting underway.
Recovery is in full swing at J & J’s farm in Amherst after a devastating fire over the weekend. The Amherst Fire Department made it clear that this was a freak accident, as a lightning strike found its way past defenses, and the ambient heat from the original fire caused it to spread to additional buildings.
The owners of the farm emphasize that they have the fire department to thank for saving their house and the Pioneer Valley farming community for leaping into action to help them rebuild.
“Still in shock. Kind of like I don’t believe it. The farming community and just the general public. It’s been a constant steady flow of can we do this, what can we do here, can we bring a machine?” said Mike Waskiewicz of J & J Farms.
The owners said that they hope to have the farm stand up and running over the next few weeks and they were planning on how to get a harvest of asparagus in yet on Monday.
Around 5 p.m. Friday afternoon, 22News crews could see flames and smoke billowing out of J & J Farms at 324 Meadow Street in Amherst. The Amherst Fire Department spent most of Friday afternoon putting out the massive fire, along with assistance from Hadley, Northampton, Pelham, Leverett, and Belchertown fire crews.
A GoFundMe currently has more than 900 donations of $87,801 as of Monday afternoon.