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Cattaraugus County fire investigators said Friday that a barn blaze in South Dayton Thursday night was sparked by a skidloader that caught fire inside the barn.

The alarm was called to the Leon Fire department from the John Herman family farm at 7385 Smith Road, South Dayton, about 7 p.m. Thursday and eventually saw volunteers from South Dayton, Conewango, Cherry Creek, Cattaraugus and Randolph at the scene for an hour.

Investigators said the accidental blaze destroyed hay and grains stored in the barn, but all farm animals were led to safety, and fire damage was lessened because of the structure's steel construction.

Brian Herman was treated at Tri-County Hospital in Gowanda for smoke inhalation suffered while trying to remove equipment from the barn, officials said.

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