The Elizabethtown Fire Department was dispatched at 2:09 on Sunday, March 29, for a fire call at CA Nails on 100 West Broad Street in Elizabethtown. Within four minutes the fire department was on the scene, according to Elizabethtown Fire Department’s Deputy Chief, Anthony Norris.
By 3:00 p.m. the downtown street filled with first responders from not only Bladen County, but from other counties as well. There are around 50 first responders with about 20 apparatuses at the scene.
Elizabethtown Fire Chief, Nick West said the firefighters believe the fire started upstairs. Norris said the fire was contained as of 4:00 p.m. and by 4:45 the fire was out.
”They made a quick stop. I’m proud of them, ” Elizabethtown Fire Department Chief West said.
Tuesday morning, Norris issued a statement with more information regarding the fire. Firefighters arrived to find a heavily smoke-filled two-story, brick and heavy timber-framed commercial building. Making entry to the building firefighters were met with high heat conditions on the interior of the structure and no visibility.
Crews deployed multiple fire attack hose lines in the front and rear of the building and established a positive water supply from three nearby hydrants. Firefighters operated in an offensive mode to cool down the bulk of the flames from short distances within the building, according to Norris’ statement.
“With engine crews hard at work controlling the fire, multiple apparatus including ladder trucks and tankers were in place to provide rapid intervention measures if needed, protecting multiple exposures,
rooftop ventilation and providing rehabilitation sites due to interior and exterior temperatures,” Norris reported.
He continued, “Firefighters quickly made entry inside the structure to conduct a search for victims and to quench the remaining hotspots. There was no one found inside the structure and no life-threatening injuries were reported on fire personnel.”
The building was in operation as a nail salon prior to closing on Thursday, March 26, due to the Covid-19 virus with no reported activities between times with the damages that occurred. The building did incur significant smoke damage and moderate fire damage.
The businesses adjacent to the CA Nails business did incurred smoke damages. One of the offices damaged is rented by the Bladen Journal from Ricky Leinwand, and the other office is used as a storage office.
Leinwand was on the scene and said he was very thankful for the firefighters. ”They did an excellent job!”
Ryan Godwin with Hilton Realty manages the CA Nails property. Godwin said the owner of the property and the renter both have insurance. “Dawn had just signed another five-year lease with me about a month ago because she knew she was going to be here and her business was good.
The upstairs of the building was not occupied. Clearing the origin and cause investigation with assistance from local and state authorities the origin of the fire was narrowed down to an area above a rear storage room and hallway in a space between the first and second levels. The cause was determined by unspecified electrical.
In a press release, the Elizabethtown Fire Department and Town of Elizabethtown said they would like to thank all involved. “We would like to extend our sincere appreciation to all the agencies that assisted in mitigation to the fire. Your efforts contributed to the successful outcome of the incident reducing risk of damage and loss to other businesses,” the statement read.
Surrounding agencies that assisted with the fire are as follows. Local emergency responders assisting with the fire were Ammon Fire Department, Bay Tree Fire Department, Bladenboro Fire Department, Bladen County Emergency Management and Bladen County EMS Division, Bladen County Sheriff’s Office, Carvers Creek Fire Department, Clarkton Fire Department, Dublin Fire Department, Elizabethtown Rescue Squad
and Elizabethtown Police Department, Hickory Grove Fire Department, Lisbon Fire Department, North Carolina Highway Patrol, Tar Heel Fire Department, White Lake Fire Department, White Oak Fire Department.
Out of county first responders on the scene assisting were East Howellsville Fire Department, Garland Fire Department, Lumberton Fire Department, North Carolina State Bureau, St. Pauls Fire Department, and Whiteville Fire Department.