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Covering the fire
April 24, 2008 - Bill Ackerbauer
The fire broke out this morning about half an hour before we usually go to press. Yikes. Fortunately, we were able to hold the press a bit, rush reporters and our photographer to the scene, and get it in the print edition of the paper.
After the presses started rolling, I headed over to the scene and shot some photos and some video clips. (See some of the footage below.)
I also chatted with folks on the street. It was a strangely social occasion, with clusters of people gaping at the scene and wondering aloud about what might have caused it? (no official word yet, I understand ) Was anyone hurt? (yes, some firefighters suffered injuries, but I understand they weren't life-threatening). Will they be able to contain it, or will it spread to more houses? (A lot of people expressed surprise that it wasn't worse, considering the gusty wind and the flying embers.)
Somebody remarked in a comment on an early version of our main online story about the fire that the story was a "mess" because it didn't have any paragraph breaks in it. That was corrected, and I'm not sure why it happened, but I think I should mention that the L-H Web site was so busy early this afternoon that for a while we weren't even able to access the site to update it. The fire coverage drew thousands more hits in a short period than most stories attract in full day.
Here's one video clip that I shot, from near the Bike Works. It's a Mayfield crew hosing down one of the buildings while it was still smoking, around 12:30 p.m.
And here's video of one of the buildings being demolished, at about 1 p.m. today, if I remember correctly. I shot this clip from the Washington Street side, on the other side of the Cayadutta Creek.
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(The Leader-Herald/Bill Ackerbauer) Since several fans of Stan Devoe have mentioned him in comments on the L-H Web site, I thought I'd put up a couple of shots I took of him today around noon. He's looking pretty wiped out in this shot.