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Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Fire Damages Building in Downtown Centerburg

Five area fire departments responded to a fire in downtown Centerburg late Tuesday evening that sent one tenant to the hospital.

Firefighters from Central Ohio Joint Fire District, Big Walnut, Mount Vernon, Delaware and Hartford arrived at 17 E. Main St., just after 10 p.m. The fire started in an upstairs apartment, according to COJFD Chief Joe Porter.

According to a report obtained from the Knox County Sheriff’s Office, a tenant, Bill Myers, fell down the steps of his second-floor apartment when trying to escape. Porter said a neighbor observing the incident, Josh Scarbury, pulled Myers from the burning building.

Myers was transported by the Delaware EMS to the Ohio State University Hospital where he was treated for burns and smoke inhalation. A spokesperson told the News this morning that Myers was not listed as a patient.

Efforts to reach Scarbury for comment were unsuccessful.

A second apartment in the building is vacant.

The building, owned by Jarrod Compton, also houses 4 Seasons Air and White’s Office Supply. Compton could not be reached this morning for information.

Brant Silveous, owner of 4 Seasons Air, said his business sustained smoke and soot damage. “The fire departments did a great job of saving our space,” said Silveous.

Sustaining water and smoke damage in an adjoining building was White’s Office Supply. Owner Walter White responded to a call around 10:30 p.m. and said the fire was mainly contained when he arrived at the scene.

“Our guys did a heck of a job. I need to give them a pat on the back,” said Porter. “It was moving really quickly.”

The State Fire Marshals Office was also contacted by COJFD. The American Red Cross was also on the scene to assist the firefighters.

Porter estimates the extent of damage to be around $100,000. The cause of the fire is still unknown and is under investigation.

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