Several buildings destroyed in Frankfort fire

An unidentified viewer submitted this photo from a massive January fire in Frankfort.
Fire Damages Downtown Frankfort Buildings
Fire damages downtown buildings

FRANKFORT, Ind. (WTHR) — Crews in Frankfort battled a large fire near the downtown area for most of the day Tuesday.

Clinton County Central Dispatch says the fire was reported around 9:30 Tuesday morning at 50 West Washington Street.

"It was just really kind of scary watching that all happen because it just kept getting bigger and bigger and bigger," said Mike Kelley, who lives in Frankfort.

Investigators say it started at T&R Pet and Grooming store on the corner and then spread to the Frankfort Sports Club, which is next door. No one was at the pet grooming store, but they had to get people out of the sports club and apartments upstairs.

Firefighters still don't know what caused the fire.

Crews arrived to find fire coming from the roof. They also had to deal with the wind and cold.

"You have to worry about where you're walking, so you have to be careful there," said Frankfort Fire Chief John Kirby. "Guys going in the fire, out of the fire, when they come out, their gear freezing up on them. You get wet gloves, so now you have wet, frozen hands."

One firefighter suffered minor injuries and was treated and released from the hospital.

Several businesses in the area remain without power.

Fire crews used a drone to check for remaining hot spots.

This is the first time the Clinton County Sheriff's Office drone has been used to help firefighters in the area.

The Red Cross was also on hand to provide assistance.

This isn't the first time there's been a fire here on that particular corner. Back in 1989, a fire burned the original corner of the town square. Now a park stands in its place.

Mayor Chris McBarnes says he's grateful firefighters were able to contain the fire to those two buildings.

"The fact that everyone's going home today, that's what matters the most to me," said McBarnes. "Buildings can be rebuilt, materials can be replaced. Lives cannot. I'm so proud of our firefighters."

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