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YOUNGSTOWN Loss is possibly $2 million in Midwest Steel & amp; Alloy fire



Published: Tue, June 19, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



The cause of the fire was not known this morning.

YOUNGSTOWN -- Fire destroyed heavy equipment and the wooden-frame shop that housed it at Midwest Steel & amp; Alloy today, with an estimated loss of $1.5 million to $2 million.

The company, wedged in a yard between railroad tracks at 200 Division St. on the North Side, employs 40 workers, said city fire Battalion Chief Tim McGarry. No one was at work when the blaze started.

A security guard at Youngstown Sinter at 251 Division St. phoned in the alarm at 1:40 a.m. today. The sheet-metal clad building at Midwest Steel was fully engulfed in flames when fire crews arrived.

Business can go on: Because the work -- such as recycling railroad cars for scrap purposes -- can be done outside, the fire will likely disrupt but not close the business, McGarry said. He said railroad cars parked on tracks on either side of the building were not damaged.

McGarry said the origin and cause of the fire weren't immediately known.

Alvin Ware, city arson bureau commander, was on the scene to investigate today.

Flames ate through the building's roof, which collapsed on the valuable heavy equipment inside, McGarry said.

The equipment included tools, a pickup truck and industrial strength shears used to cut up railroad cars. One piece of equipment was valued at $1 million.

Firefighters were still on the scene at 11 a.m. today dousing "hot spots," said Battalion Chief Robert Hian. The lack of nearby hydrants meant that water-filled railroad tank cars that hold 15,000 gallons had to be shuttled in, he said.




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