Overnight fire destroys processing plant for Vidalia onions

Published: Aug. 19, 2022 at 4:58 PM EDT
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TATTNALL COUNTY, Ga. (WTOC) - An overnight fire in Tattnall County destroys one farm’s processing plant for Vidalia onions.

Some flames are still popping up from the fire they’ve been battling since the middle of the night.

Firefighters got to Dry Branch Farm just before 3 a.m. to find flames already climbing into the sky and lighting up the dark sky. It burned the conveyor belts and equipment they used to sort and grade onions.

Inside, you can see piles that represent hundreds of pounds of the crop that was lost.

“They had storage bins of onions to be processed and the plastic bins had started melting. It was a major fire when they arrived,” said Walt Rogers with Tattnall County Fire.

Crews from across Tattnall County and surrounding fire departments came to try and put out the fire but also keep it away from a warehouse that holds tons of onions waiting to be boxed and shipped.

“We concentrated our efforts on saving the building behind me. It contains a good bit of the processed onions.”

Rogers says they would have likely finished all their onions by next week. Now, they must decide how they’ll rebuild before next Spring.

They’ll continue to monitor this through the weekend.