Fire that destroyed business, injured firefighter, was an accident

5:25 PM, Jul 18, 2013   |    comments
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A firefighter who suffered heat exhaustion while battling a fire at a Claxton business Wednesday night is out of the hospital.

Captain Steve Newby with the Claxton Fire Department said the firefighter was treated and released late Wednesday, and should be fine.

The fire completely destroyed  European Import Auto Parts on Clinton Highway.  Investigators believe the fire started in a vehicle in the garage that had a leaky gas tank.  The gas leaked out and something sparked the blaze, which quickly spread.

They do believe it was an accident.

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(WBIR - Powell) A business went up in flames Wednesday evening along Clinton Highway.

The business, European Import Auto Parts, was north of Powell near the Knox and Anderson county line. It has been deemed a total loss.

One firefighter was transported by an Anderson County ambulance to the hospital with heat exhaustion. No word yet on his condition.


The owner of a neighboring business saw smoke and tried to put the fire out, but he said it was too aggressive.

"The fire escalated extremely fast. There were explosions from the building," said Bill Kelly.

He says he saw some fuel that could ignite and told everyone to clear the area.

Units from Claxton, Knox County, Knoxville, and several other agencies responded to the blaze.

After they put out the fire, crews brought in heavy equipment to take down the building piece by piece. They say they had to be careful because the business had hydraulic fluid and oil inside, which is flammable.

Investigators are looking into what sparked the fire. Crews say they believe an accident at the facility from one of the workers sparked the blaze. The owner also believes it's an accident.


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