Barn fire claims 22 equine lives in New Jersey


In the early hours of the morning on Saturday, Jan. 21, Art and Betty Hahn’s life’s work was engulfed in flames. Around 1:40 a.m., a neighbor alerted the Hahns that the large stable at their Heritage Acres in Lafayette, N.J. was ablaze. The fast-moving barn fire destroyed the structure and killed all of the 22 horses inside before firefighters were able to stop the blaze.

According to owner Betty Hahn, the barn had no known electrical problems. There was no hay or fuel stored in the structure. Currently, investigators say that it does not appear the fire was deliberately set, but the cause is still unknown.

Heritage Acres was home to a mix of show horses from various disciplines, but boarded a handful of rescued equines and companion horses as well. Four horses that were kept in another barn on the property were not harmed by the fire.

The Hahns and both in their 70s and had run the stable for 46 years. With the loss of the facility, they plan to sell the property and retire rather than try to rebuild.

Further Reading
Extinguish the Threat of Barn Fires
Be Prepared for a Barn Fire
Stop a Barn Fire before it Starts


  1. What a devastating event! The cause of this fire should be found and should be sorry for killing 22 beautiful equines that never deserved to die. I am so sorry for the Hahns’ loss 🙁

  2. Living just 14 miles from the Hahn’s, I’ve known them a long time. It has been ruled an electrical fire by the fire marshall. It’s so sad, both about their life’s work and passion for horses. And all those poor horse’s that perished.


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