With temperatures recently reaching more comfortable levels, Fort Hays Municipal Golf Course has seen an influx of golfers during the last few weeks.
The season might be cut short for a few members, however, who received unexpected phone calls early Sunday morning.
At 3:57 a.m. Sunday, the Hays Fire Department, assisted by the Hays Police Department and Ellis County EMS, was dispatched to a building fire at the golf course, according to Fire Chief Gary Brown.
A passing motorist discovered the fire, which was ablaze and spreading throughout a golf cart storage building.
“That segment of personal cart sheds had 24 different carts that belonged to our members,” said Rich Guffey, pro shop manager.
The fire continued to spread, so the Ellis County Rural Fire Department was called to assist in putting out the flames.
“Firefighters used four hose lines to bring the fire under control,” Brown said.
A tanker truck from the rural fire department was called in due to the limited water supply at the golf course.
Seven fire trucks and 24 firefighters responded. The last firefighters left the scene at 5:55 a.m., according to Brown.
The Hays Fire Department reported the cause of the fire was accidental, but due to the heavy damage, the most probable cause was not determined.
Guffey said he thought the fire was probably due to an electrical short-out.
“It looked to me like maybe a cart or charger may have shorted out, some sort of electrical short, and caught fire,” he said. “That’s speculation, though. We’ll just have to see.”
The majority of the golf carts were completely destroyed or beyond repair, according to Guffey, who estimated approximately 16 to 18 people lost their carts and possessions within the sheds.
“I suspect we’ll rebuild the shed after we go through all the process,” Guffey said.
The course is waiting on the inspection process to be completed and for more information to unfold.
“It’s still a little early,” Guffey said. “I still have a few questions of my own.”