Fire damages Ace Hardware lumber yard

Jon Johnson Photo/Gila Herald: Warning tape surrounds a pile of burnt wood and metal at the Safford Builders Supply/Ace Hardware sawmill. Late Thursday night, a fire seized several items. The cause of the fire is being investigated.

By Jon Johnson

SAFFORD – A fire damaged the lumber yard at Safford Builders Supply/Ace Hardware late Thursday night. Although a quantity of wood and metal roofing was destroyed, there were no injuries and the business was open early and bright Friday morning.

Safford Police and Safford Fire Brigade were dispatched to a report of a fire at the store at 707 S. 6 at approximately 10pm.this ave. According to ACE owner Preston Owens, surveillance footage from the store shows the fire starting at about 10 p.m. The fire brigade arrives just six minutes later to fight it.

Jon Johnson Photo/Gila Herald: The quick response of the Safford Fire Department helped prevent the fire from consuming the entire lumberyard.

“They put a good stop to it,” Owens said. “They were really fast.”

According to Owens, who said the more valuable wood assets were in warehouses or stacked in other units, the fire consumed mostly siding, 1X12 lumber, posts and some metal roofing.

Jon Johnson Photo/Gila Herald: The fire burned wood, metal roofing and stakes like this, collected in a wheelbarrow.

“We’re blessed that it didn’t destroy the entire yard,” Owens said. “It could have been much worse. We are happy that it concerns material damage.”

The Safford Builders family had already removed most of the badly burned pieces by the time the sun rose Friday morning and were hard at work getting the store ready for its loyal customers.

Although there is video surveillance of the fire, the cause is still under investigation.

Jon Johnson Photo/Gila Herald: After the most burnt pieces were thrown out and the rest gathered in piles, the store opened early Friday morning.

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