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31 Horses Killed in Toronto Racetrack Fire

5 August 2002

TORONTO -- As reported by the CBC: ``A fire that raged through two barns at Woodbine Racetrack near Toronto early Sunday killed 31 horses, says Bill Hiscott, an investigator with the fire marshal's office.

``The cause will not be known for several days, until investigators finish their study, he told a media conference Monday. But he did say there was nothing suspicious or unusual in the blaze, which broke out about 3 a.m. Sunday.

``...The fire raced through the barns so by the time firefighters arrived, they were mainly trying to stop it spreading, he said.

``Two of the horses were euthanized after the fire; 29 burned to death in one of the barns.

``There was `devastation all the way through,' he said. `Fire got into every stall' and the barn where most of the horses died was totally consumed in well under an hour.

``...As many as 50 horses were treated for burns, smoke inhalation and shock.

``...Damage is so far estimated at as much as $3 million, but that's just the two barns. The figure will be much higher counting the horses, some of whom have yet to be identified..."

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