Friday, 24 March 2023
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Atchison fire leaves three businesses damaged

(KAIR)--A Tuesday noon hour fire in Atchison- downtown business district caused minimal structural damage but left three businesses damaged by heavy smoke.

Atchison Fire Chief Patrick Weishaar, in a release, says firefighters were called to the Atchison Furniture Company, located at 501 Commercial Street, around 12:30 Tuesday afternoon, after receiving a report that “some shelving was on fire.”

Fire crews, en route, saw thick smoke coming from the area of the store.

When they arrived, heavy smoke and flames were found coming from the closed garage door of the business- loading dock; and, with a delivery truck moved, and through use of a power saw to gain entrance, firefighters found the loading dock engulfed in flames and went to work to extinguish the fire. A separate crew entered through the rear entrance and worked to extinguish the fire that had spread into the furniture store.

Adjacent buildings, including Hilligoss Shoes and Eddie- Five & Dime, sustained what Weishaar said was “heavy smoke damage when smoke infiltrated both buildings through the adjoining walls.”

Power fans were utilized by fire crews during the afternoon to clear smoke from the buildings, with the team remaining on site into the evening to assist with cleanup.

According to Weishaar, the extent of the damage from smoke and soot is not immediately determined, but structural damage was minimal due to the fire being contained mostly to the loading dock area.

The Fire Department- investigator was on the scene Tuesday, but a state investigator has been called in to assist due to, according to Weishaar, “the extent of damage from smoke and water.”

No injuries are reported due to Tuesday- fire.

Atchison County EMS was placed on standby, with those first responders working with Atchison Police to assist with the precautionary evacuation of businesses on the south side of Commercial Street- 500 block.

The Salvation Army provided refreshments to all of the responding agencies.

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