Owner: Baugo Township business fire sparked by plasma cutter

ELKHART COUNTY, Ind. -- Firefighters are keeping an eye on hot spots at an Elkhart County auto shop that went up in flames Tuesday night.

It started around 5 p.m. in Baugo Township at Diamond Finishes.

It happens to be across the street from the Baugo Township Fire Department on County Road 3 where firefighters spotted the smoke while playing basketball outside before a training exercise.

The owner says he was working on the bumper of a car with a torch when the business caught fire accidentally. He tried to put the fire out himself but eventually told all of the employees to get out.

Originally firefighters started fighting the blaze from the inside but had to call for back-up and use aerial trucks when the flames spread to the back where flammable materials were being kept.

Chief Chad Carey from the Baugo Township Fire Department says, “It’s pretty much out now, it's the hot spots were at hitting. So it’s going to take a little bit before we can get to those.”

Eight tanker trucks kept rotating, bringing in water 35-hundred gallons at a time.

The few houses neighboring the business were evacuated as a precaution.

Neighbor Darrien Harries says, “I heard my dog barking at the front door. I went to see what was going on and I seen flames coming out of the front of the building.”

There are three tenants that also housed their businesses at Diamond Finishes.

They provided all types of services but primarily installed spray-on bedliners.

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