Locals from a small village in China were devasted after they discovered a 2,200-year-old sacred tree burning after somehow catching fire in the middle of winter.
Witnesses immediately reported the ancient locust tree, located in Xisuohuang Village, in northern Shanxi Province, had caught fire at around 6:17pm on 25th January.
The Guanshan Town Fire Brigade Command Centre immediately dispatched two fire lorries and 12 firefighting personnel to the scene.
By 6:38pm, the firefighting team had arrived and found that the tree, known as “the first locust tree in the Three Jin Dynasties”, was mainly burning at the roots and branches.
Video footage shows the sacred tree, growing beside the outer wall of a temple, slowly being devoured by the flames.
Firefighters promptly used two water hoses to control the situation.
At 8:16pm, the Pingding County Fire and Rescue Brigade reportedly sent one water tanker and six firefighting personnel to reinforce the Guanshan Fire Station.
The visible fire on the locust tree had extinguished, but there was still significant smoke at the scene.
At 8:58pm, the Beihai Road Fire Station dispatched three fire lorries and 13 personnel for additional support.
By 11:40pm, the onsite fire had completely extinguished, officials said.
However, the fire had rekindled the following morning.
More firefighters arrived at the scene and managed to put out the flames in about an hour.
Regarding the cause of the fire, local departments, including the police station in the jurisdiction area, have initiated an investigation.
The 100-foot-tall locust tree planted in the early Western Han Dynasty (206 BCE), local media said.
With a history of more than 2,200 years, it is the oldest and still surviving locust tree in Shanxi.
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