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UPDATE: Defensive fire limits damage


Update: The Fire Marshal's Office has determined the fire to be accidental, possibly caused by welding.

Damages from the fire are estimated at costing between 15 to 20 million dollars.


Amarillo, TX - Determining the cause of a fire that destroyed a building at Town Square Village could take sometime.

As the investigation continues firefighters are reviewing their methods for putting out large fires.

We spoke with The Amarillo Fire Department about what goes into tackling a fire of this magnitude.

Nine fire units and two command units were called to help fight the fire at Town Square Village.

Amarillo Firefighter, Tyler Drackley, says they have procedures set in place, when taking on a large fire.

"We are very lucky not to run on big fires like that often, but when we do, we have to put our game face on," said Drackley.

Fire crews use specials tools when fighting large fires to keep flames from spreading to neighboring buildings.

"On a defensive fire we have big main monitors that we put out and they can put out a thousand gallons a minute. That is what we use to put out the big defensive fires. Defensive means you are not making entry, you are just going to stay outside the structure and protect surrounding buildings," said Drackley.

Captain Dana Havlik says the heat from the fire was so significant that lenses on their fire apparatus were damaged.

"Just the exposed wood inside the building it was all framed up without and sheet rock protection. It puts out a tremendous amount of heat and it is more than you would see with a typical construction fire," said Havlik.

The Amarillo Police department says when they have fires this large communication is essential.

"We learned from September 11th how vital communication is. We have adopted polices and procedures to make sure that we have good communication between our crews, good communication models speaking on the radio so that communication is well understood."

Along with the cause of the fire, costs of the damage from the fire have yet to be determined.
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