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Fire guts commercial garage in Norwich

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Norwich — A Sunday morning fire destroyed a commercial garage at 81 Corning Road and killed a horse.

A Norwich Fire Department press release said that no one was injured in the 6 a.m. fire.

Smoke could be seen billowing up from the scene from across the city and the first firefighters on the scene called for assistance from all four of the city's volunteer departments as well as the Mohegan Tribal and Submarine Base departments.

Battalion Chief Marc Benjamin said the damage to the building and its contents is "going to be a total loss."

"The fire was placed under control within an hour, and we were on scene in three minutes," Benjamin said. "We had heavy fire blowing out of the entire building. We darkened it down with our resources immediately, then we had mutual aid come in and supply an additional water source to finally put it under control."

Hoses were run from Hamilton Avenue and Gillette Road to bring water to firefighters working at the garage, which is about 100 yards off the road.

Benjamin said there were numerous cars and construction materials, as well as flammable liquids, inside the building, which he described as a metal, 40-by-60 foot, four-bay garage.

"We had the hazmat team from the sub base come to monitor the situation, and we had Mohegan Tribal come in to control the leaks of hazardous materials," Benjamin said. "The fire was the problem, but vehicles and metals like aluminium and magnesium made it a struggle to put the fire out."

Shoreline Sewer and Drain, LLC, a septic contruction and repair company, occupies the garage according to business listings. The fire marshal's office is investigating the cause.

s.elliot@theday.com

s.spinella@theday.com

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