New Albany MS/Union County MS June 26- Thomas Wholesale Furniture fire aftermath:
Twelve hours after the huge fire was “knocked down” but not totally extinguished, firemen and fire inspectors were still on the scene at Thomas Wholesale Furniture.
Fire crews had been on site for about 18 hours when most of these photos were taken by an NAnewsweb.com photographer early Wednesday evening.
Inspectors from the Mississippi Fire Marshall’s office and private experts hired to assist the fire marshal were on the scene mid-morning Wednesday to define fire aftermath and investigate causes.
An employee from a Little Rock, Arkansas private contractor said his company works with the state fire marshal’s office. Among other things the contractor had set up devices that were continuously taking air samples around the perimeter of the property. The private contractor employee, who declined to give his name, said the air samples gathered by the instruments could help in determining the cause and circumstances of the huge fire.
The blaze destroyed more than a million square feet of building space.
The first fire-fighting crews and equipment arrived on the scene at about 1:30 a.m. Wednesday morning, June 26, to find fire already “coming through the roof and out opening in the building,” according to Deputy New Albany Fire Chief Mark Whiteside.
Whiteside said that, in addition to New Albany Fire Department (NAFD) firefighters and equipment, personnel and equipment from every one of the county’s volunteer fire departments helped combat the fire.
There were no serious injuries although a number of firemen received first degree (and possible second degree burns) from being near the massive fire.
One industry source says the average fire temperature of burning buildings is about 1,700 degrees Fahrenheit. Ordinary carbon steel starts to melt at about 1,500 degrees Fahrenheit. All fire fighters are threatened with burns and other injuries when fighting such blazes. Especially vulnerable are the fireman on the long extension ladders that stretch over the top of the blaze and pour water over the fire less than 50 feet below them.
NAnewsweb.com was the only news organization at the scene when the fire was at its peak around 2 am. Wednesday morning. Ours story with photographs was the first one published about 3 a.m. Wednesday morning and has remained the principle source of news about the fire throughout the day.
We returned to take more photos of the the fire aftermath Wednesday afternoon.
Blake Smith of the North Haven Fire Department was one of the firemen still on the scene as dusk was falling Wednesday night. He and other firemen were continuing to pour water and fire suppressant chemicals on “hot spots.” Smith was one of the firemen who received First Degree burns while fighting the fire early Wednesday morning.
More information about the causes of the fire may become available in coming days and weeks and will be published here when known.
NAnewsweb.com’s early coverage of Thomas Furniture Fire.