NORTH AMERICAN CORPORATION FIRE
February 25, 2000 –A fire at 1001 West Elk Avenue, North American Corporation, brought the City of Elizabethton to a stand-still. Initial dispatch was received at 03:54. Interior attack was quickly abandoned due to unsafe conditions and it quickly became a defensive firefighting operation. Over the course of the next 6 days, approximately 55 Fire Departments, both paid and volunteer, responded with 412 Firefighters and 86 Fire Apparatus, including 14 Fire Engines and 3 Aerial Ladder Trucks, to put approximately 4.5 million gallons of water on the structure. The fire was finally brought under control when heavy equipment was brought in to cut a 50’ wide fire break. Over 975,000 square feet of the structure were completely destroyed, for an estimated $5,000,000 worth of damage. The last EFD units cleared the scene on 03/02/2000 at 20:00, although Fire Personnel were on the scene off-and-on throughout the day on 03/03/2000.
March 3, 2000 –At 20:26 EFD was dispatched back to 1001 West Elk Avenue, North American Corporation, on a “rekindle”. Upon arrival, the fire was located on both sides of the fire break, in both previously burnt and unburnt portions of the structure. EFD was once again forced to call in all shifts and request assistance from local Volunteer Fire Departments. 12 Volunteer Fire Departments responded along with EFD, for a total of 120 firefighters, 12 Fire Engines, 27 Water Tankers and 1 Aerial Ladder Apparatus. It took approximately 3 hours to bring the fire under control. A total of ½ - ¾ million gallons of water were used in the extinguishment of the fire. All EFD units finally cleared the call at 20:15 on 03/08/00. The cause of the fire was recorded as suspicious rekindle.