Fire temporarily closes Ashland store

15 years ago
By Kathy McCarty  
Staff Writer

    ASHLAND — The Ashland One Stop is temporarily closed, following a fire in a second-floor apartment early Saturday.
    “We received a call at approximately 3:30 a.m. July 25, reporting a fire at the Ashland One Stop building on Main St.,” said Ashland Fire Chief Ned LaBelle. 

    LaBelle said three occupants were in the building when the fire started.
    “The owners — husband, wife and a child — were in their apartment at the time of the fire. Two other tenants were away,” he said. According to the Town Office, the property is owned by Roger and Jessica Craig.
    LaBelle credited an employee with getting the family out in time.
    “Luckily an employee happened to come to work early, saw smoke and awoke the owners. They were able to get out using the fire escape,” explained LaBelle.
    All occupants were evacuated safely. A firefighter sustained a knee injury at the scene.
    “One fireman had stuff fall on him and he injured his knee. Stuff was piled up outside and fell,” said the fire chief. “One person also lost an animal they considered as family.”
    According to LaBelle, the fire started in the tenant’s apartment and was determined to be electrical in origin.
    Several other departments were called in to assist at the scene.
    “It’s a big building, with a gas station. We wanted to make sure we had plenty of help, so we called in crews from Portage, Masardis and Mapleton,” said LaBelle.
    LaBelle said the owners are beginning the clean-up process.
    “There was extensive damage, from fire and smoke. The apartment upstairs is pretty much ruined. The health inspector came by on Monday. Everything has to be removed, including the contents of the store, due to damage related to the fire. The owners eventually plan to reopen the store. With a bit of work, it’ll happen,” said LaBelle, adding the store sustained mostly smoke damage, with the fire being contained primarily to the second floor of the structure.
    The property was insured. LaBelle noted the tenants were also insured. No estimate on damage was available at presstime.