BREMEN — A quiet Sunday quickly became dangerous as a major fire swept through two buildings at a local business and threatened nearby residences.
The accidental fire at Standard Glass Co., 404 N. Bowen Ave., happened in two wooden shop structures. Bremen Fire Department Chief Jerry Lanning said individuals were working on cars inside one of the buildings and the problem began when a wood stove was ignited.
“I understand it hadn’t been started for some time, and the fire marshal was able to determine that something went wrong in the chimney area,” Lanning said. “It started in the wall and ran up into the ceiling. The official cause that we’re listing is the wood-burning stove.”
The blaze involved a handful of small chemical vats, which resulted in a few small explosions.
The fire destroyed the initial structure, an attached building on the southeast corner and their contents, which included multiple vehicles.
Lanning said over 30 Bremen firefighters were joined by 30 others from Nappanee and LaPaz, and that it took around 45 minutes to knock down the blaze.
“We still had a lot of work around there after that, but at that point we knew it wasn’t going to cross the alley into the neighbors or into the main building,” Lanning said. “Shortly after I got there, the flames were across the alley, so it easily could’ve got to the house behind there.”
One firefighter was treated on the scene for overexertion and released.