IMAGES | Several fire departments respond to massive fire at Clarksville auto salvage yard
No injuries have been reported.
CLARKSVILLE, Ind. (WDRB) -- Crews from several fire departments responded to a large fire at an auto salvage yard in Clarksville early Thursday.
The fire started around 6:30 a.m. at Kenny's Imports, a wrecker and auto salvage business in the 1200 block of McCullough Pike near Emery Crossing.
The owner of business says he lost at least three pieces of expensive machinery. He says he was at home when the fire started and saw it spreading in real time when he checked the business surveillance video.
Several fire departments responded to the massive fire, and a thick cloud of smoke could be seen from from WDRB Sky View as firefighters worked to put out several burning cars.
Clarksville Fire Chief Brandon Skaggs says the first reports of the fire came in around 6:30 a.m. from residents and police.
Skaggs says when crews arrived, they had "to do a thorough scene size-up to determine exactly what was on fire. This is a salvage yard and there are many different types of equipment and there are probably over 100 cars involved."
After checking to make sure there were no victims, Skaggs says crews had a hard time getting water on the fire.
"The initial challenge was water supply," Skaggs said. "We're in tanker operations in this area. The closest hydrant is a little bit further than we can lay lines to, so we've relied on additional departments throughout the Clark County area to bring us tankers and set up dump tank operations."
Because salvaged cars are stacked on top of each other Skaggs says "it creates voids and spaces that's really hard to get to. We're going to probably have to get some equipment down here to move some of the cars. That way we can actually get in those void spaces."
Skaggs said firefighters also extinguished flames at a garage in the yard. He says firefighters gained control of the fire around 10 a.m. About 20 Clarksville firefighters responded, along with about firefighters at least seven other agencies throughout Clark County, including Jeffersonville, Utica and Sellersburg.
No injuries have been reported. Skaggs says firefighters are checking with neighboring businesses to make sure they weren't affected by the fire.
Skaggs acknowledged that people in the area reported hearing explosions, but was unable to confirm those reports.
"I can't actually confirm that there were explosions or what exploded," Skaggs said. "So when we get into the investigative mode we'll try to find out."
Skaggs says firefighters will remain at the business for several hours to check for hot spots and make sure there are no additional flare-ups.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation, and Skaggs says video from the Jeffersonville Fire Department will be helpful.
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