By Jeff Noble
A fire Thursday afternoon at a recently-built storage building in North Corbin caused an estimated $20,000 in damage. Two fire departments fought the blaze and remained on the scene for nearly an hour.
No one was injured.
It started at 4:18 p.m. at the Taylor’s Equipment Service headquarters on Chase Lane, off American Greeting Card Road in Laurel County.
Chief Darryl Baker of the West Knox Volunteer Fire Department said the fire started in the rafters of the storage building. The rafters were above the center water separator tank, one of three tanks inside the building. When full, each tank holds about 8,000 gallons of water.
Bob Taylor, a supervisor with the company, was working in the garage helping take parts off a truck when the fire began.
“It just started lightly, just like a campfire. We were nearby working on the truck when a woman came by and said, ‘It looks like there’s a fire in that building.’” We went over and it got that set of timber on top. We used fire extinguishers at first. It slowed it down a little bit, but not enough. So we called the fire department.”
Baker noted one problem was the fire got into a plastic sun panel on the building’s roof and started dripping hot plastic below to the floor.
“We had our gear on, so it wasn’t a problem for firefighters. But the dripping hot plastic can cause severe burns to a person’s skin if they’re not properly protected.”
Crews from West Knox and the Lily Volunteer Fire Departments were at the scene to fight the blaze, and quickly shut off the gas and electricity to the building’s water separator tanks. About 20 firefighters responded to the blaze, as did Laurel County Emergency Management and the Laurel County’s Chemical Stockpile Emergency Preparedness Program (CSEPP).
The main damage to the building was to the middle section of the roof, with the damage estimated at about $20,000, according to Baker. He added an investigation on the fire would be done through Taylor’s Equipment’s insurance company.