Fire destroys Liberty business

In this file photo from October 2019, Liberty County firefighters try to contain a fire that destroyed Shamrock Vacuum Service in Liberty. Liberty County has adopted fire codes that will help prevent fires at newly-constructed businesses in the unincorporated areas of the county.

Firefighters and emergency responders from 14 different agencies battled a blaze overnight that destroyed a Liberty business.

According to Liberty County Fire Marshal Bill Hergemueller, the fire at Shamrock Vacuum Service, located at 11616 E. US 90 east of Ames, was reported around 3 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 19. The fire originated inside a building used for offices, a warehouse and a shop.

“It was a metal building that used to be a tractor implement place years ago. The owner, Lance Carr, acquired it several years ago for the vacuum service,” Hergemueller said.

The origin of the fire is still under investigation, which will be handled by Liberty Fire Department, the fire marshal added.

Shamrock Vacuum Services, located at 11616 US 90 east of Ames, was destroyed by fire in the early morning hours of Saturday, Oct. 19.

All totaled, there were roughly 100 firefighters battling the blaze at its peak. As of of 9 a.m., the fire was contained and firefighters were still monitoring some smaller fires and hot spots, he said.

Hergemueller estimates that the losses to the business could be well over $2 million.

“This was a very large building with offices in the front and a warehouse and shop in the back. There was an 18-wheeler that was being serviced inside the shop and it caught fire and is part of the losses,” the fire marshal said.

Agencies responding to the fire include Liberty, Hull-Daisetta, HWY 321, Kenefick, Tarkington, Dayton, Hardin, Batson, Nome, Liberty County EMS, Liberty County Hazmat, ESD #3, North Liberty County and Plum Grove.

Assistant Fire Marshal and Hardin Fire Chief Craig Powell said manpower was an issue, resulting in the high number of agencies called to respond.

Photos were provided by Liberty County Fire Marshal Bill Hergemueller and Assistant Fire Marshal and Hardin Fire Chief Craig Powell.

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Before creating Bluebonnet News in 2018, Vanesa Brashier was a community editor for the Houston Chronicle/Houston Community Newspapers. During part of her 12 years at the newspapers, she was assigned as the digital editor and managing editor for the Humble Observer, Kingwood Observer, East Montgomery County Observer and the Lake Houston Observer, and the editor of the Dayton News, Cleveland Advocate and Eastex Advocate. Over the years, she has earned more than two dozen writing awards, including Journalist of the Year.

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