Oct 9, 2019

Officials uncertain when the Inn at Versailles will re-open following Tuesday's Fire

Courtest of WHIO-

How quickly the historic Versailles Inn will reopen will depend on how aggressive its ownership is in repairing damage fire crews had to cause to put out the quickly spreading fire, Versailles Fire Chief Brian Pearson said. 

it's too soon to talk about a preliminary cause or origin of the fire, which prompted a 4-alarm callout because more manpower was needed, Chief Pearson said.

The extra manpower -- as many as 90 firefighters all told, he said -- was needed to help get at voids behind walls of the old building and check common attic and basement spaces the inn and restaurant shares with other businesses and apartments in the Versailles Inn complex on West Main Street.

Pearson said crews caused some cosmetic interior and exterior damage, some ceilings had to be pulled to locate flames and smoke caused damage as well. Four apartments were evacuated because they share attic space and the second floor with the Versailles Inn and restaurant.

Medical personnel did check some firefighters out of precaution, but no one was injured or had to be taken to a hospital.

Pearson said he was about two blocks away when he noticed smoke showing from the rear of the inn, where the restaurant is located. He said he called for a second alarm right away.

The nature of the building -- its open spaces behind walls where fire could spread undetected -- prompted him to call for more manpower, which made it a 3-alarm fire.

Pearson said fears that fire could spread to the roof prompted him to enhance the incident to a 4th alarm.

Engine and ladder crews from Osgood, Russia, Ansonia, Gettysburg, Greenville City, Burkettsville (Darke and Mercer counties), Covington, Bradford, Liberty Twp., New Madison, Arcanum, Rossburg, and Minster from Shelby County answered the call.

Versailles crews remained on scene into Wednesday morning to monitor the building for rekindles, he said.

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