Firefighters spent 12 hours battling a Tuesday blaze that eventually destroyed a cabinet factory in Clearfield.
A steady wind and drums of flammable liquid in the shop contributed to the loss, Clearfield Fire Chief Roger Bodily said.The blaze broke out about 11 a.m. in the North Davis Cabinet Co., a 20,000-square-foot complex of joined buildings dating back to World War II in the old Naval Supply Depot in west Clearfield adjacent to the Freeport Center.
Bodily said the fire's cause has not been pinpointed yet, and he is meeting with the business owners, brothers Elvin and Roy Rasmussen, Wednesday morning to determine damage.
The fire started in the area where spray finish is applied to cabinets in the north end of the complex, which Bodily described as two buildings originally about 80 feet apart joined by an open center section used to store truckloads of lumber and plywood used in making the kitchen cabinets.
Fanned by a stiff north wind and fueled by drums of flammable wood finish products, the blaze engulfed the building within about 15 minutes, the chief said.
Firefighters tried to attack the flames inside the complex, he said, but "the guys were taking a beating inside with the heat and the wind, so we made the decision to pull them back out and protect the surrounding buildings."
Firemen did establish a temporary line around the office inside the building, holding off the flames while company employees and firefighters salvaged the firm's business records, furniture and office equipment.
Bodily said three Clearfield firefighters were treated at a local hospital for heat exhaustion and later discharged. Clearfield responded to the call with 26 firefighters and later called for aid from Layton, which sent a pumper truck and eight firefighters.
After battling the blaze all afternoon, Bodily said he called in a backhoe between 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. to pull down some exterior walls to expose areas the firefighters hadn't been able to reach. Because of the way the two original buildings were joined, the chief said firefighters had to deal with six or eight exterior-type walls instead of the normal four.