Darren Doyle, story and photos
Firefighters from both Edmonson and Butler Counties responded to a fire at Dunaway Timber Company at the crossroads in Roundhill Thursday evening around 8:30PM.
Darrell Glenn, a Dunaway employee said the fire started in an area where band saw blades were sharpened inside the sawmill. "I was down here putting logs up (just outside the mill) and when I turned around the corner it was already blazing," he said.
The owner, Harry Christ (pronounced Krist) was at the scene along with several employees as they tried to help in any way they could.
"The problem is, this is the lead-in to the sawmill, so the entire sawmill is gone," Christ said. "It's been destroyed. The fire department got here in time to save the support equipment, but it was a Wood-Mizer sawmill and that's gone."
After the blaze was extinguished, Bear Creek Fire Chief J.T. Carroll said that steel beams inside the structure had gotten hot and had sagged, which means the entire structure could be compromised, although it was difficult to tell in the dark.
No injuries were reported in the incident.
"Fortunately, it was after hours and the loader driver was here putting some logs up. He found it and we were very fortunate that it happened that way," Christ said. "If it hadn't been for that, we probably would've lost the entire structure."
Christ said they would have to wait until daylight to see the extent of the damage and would assess the situation Friday morning. The company still has a mill in operation next door and is in the process of building a new one, according to Christ.
In addition to Bear Creek FD, members of the Brownsville FD were one scene as well as Morgantown Fire Department. Warren Rural Electric responded in order to cut power to the facility and handle power lines on scene.
Chief Carroll said that Bear Creek FD was able to utilize their firefighting foam suppression system to help snuff out the blaze quickly. Employees also used the facility's own water hoses to help control small areas as needed.
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