Bloomington Township firefighters work together to extinguish a fire that destroyed a large garage Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018 at 1301 Alexander Road. Investigators determined the cause to be accidental.


BLOOMINGTON — A fire that destroyed a garage and several vehicles in southwest Bloomington Wednesday was an accident. 

“The owner was using a cutting torch and it lit some combustibles,” said Bloomington Township Fire Chief Tom Willan. “Things just grew after that and it got out of hand.”

Firefighters were called to the David Price residence at 1301 Alexander Road at 12:45 p.m. Wednesday. Price told The Pantagraph he was working near his garage when he noticed the fire. He attempted to put it out, suffering minor burns on his face in the process.

The fire damaged a sun room attached to the house, and the house sustained smoke damage. The heat also melted siding on another garage about 10 feet away from the garage Price was working near. At least two vehicles were destroyed as well.

“We don’t have a damage estimate as of yet,” Willan said. “An adjustor was there (Thursday) morning and they were working on it.”

At least 13 units from Bloomington Township, Bloomington, Heyworth and Downs fire department were at the scene.

Meanwhile, fire investigators in Normal said Thursday that a fire reported at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday was due to a quilt being used as a window covering in an apartment at The Lodge on Willow, a student apartment building at 214 W. Willow St.

The quilt came into contact with an incandescent light bulb in a lamp on a nightstand. The lamp shade had been removed, which allowed the quilt to come in direct contact with the hot bulb, causing the fire.

No damage estimate is available, said NFD spokesman Matt Swaney. The third-floor bedroom where the fire began sustained only moderate smoke damage. The fire sprinkler activation saturated the room with water and damaged the contents of the room and the ceilings and carpets of the rooms below, but the fire was extinguished.

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Follow Kevin Barlow on Twitter: @pg_barlow



Staff Writer for The Pantagraph.

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