CLAYTON, Ill. -- A hunting cabin and a machine shed were both destroyed in a fire late Saturday afternoon near 3059 N. 1200th Ave. in eastern Adams County.
No one was injured.Fire Chief Sam Miller of the Clayton Fire Department said no one was in the A-frame cabin when the fire was reported at 4:40 p.m., and the fire spread quickly to the nearby machine shed, which contained two tractors and a truck."Everything was involved by the time we got there," Miller said.Firefighters from six area fire departments responded to the fire call. Assisting the Clayton department were crews from the Camp Point, Golden, Central Adams, Liberty and Brown County/Versailles fire departments.Miller said the extra help was needed because "it was a big fire, and all of the departments are short-handed because of deer season. There's guys in the woods, and it takes a while for everybody to get somewhere."Miller said another reason so many departments got involved is because no water supply was available at the fire scene. Each responding fire department brought at least one tanker truck.Miller said John Simon, director of the Adams County Emergency Management Agency, helped at the scene by "staging" the trucks as they arrived for greatest efficiency in fighting the blaze.An Adams County ambulance also stood by in case it was needed.Miller said the cause of the fire was not immediately determined."It's still under investigation," he said. "The state fire marshal will be here to investigate that."Miller said firefighters noticed that "they had a wood-burning stove inside the cabin and had a fire ring outside," which may have contributed to the fire. "That's our speculation," he said.He said the cabin was unoccupied at the time of the fire because the people using the cabin "were all out in the woods" for deer season.Scanner reports indicated a quantity of ammunition was inside the cabin. However, Miller said ammunition by itself isn't that much of a safety concern to firefighters."Ammunition just pops in a fire -- unless it's in a firearm," he said. "If it's in a firearm, that's another story."Fire crews remained on the scene of the fire for about four hours.