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UPDATE: Employees Get First Look at Elkview Insurance Building Destroyed in Fire

By: Jennifer Rizzi, WSAZ News Staff, Alex Snyder Email
By: Jennifer Rizzi, WSAZ News Staff, Alex Snyder Email
WSAZ Photo/Hillary Hall

WSAZ Photo/Hillary Hall

UPDATE 2/9/13 at 5:38 p.m.
ELKVIEW, W.Va. (WSAZ) – Workers from one insurance company assessed the damage after their business caught fire Friday evening.

It’s a work day that had employees at Western & Southern Life assessing their own damage after a fire tore through their office.

Randy Young had only been home a few hours when a firefighter friend called his phone and gave him bad news.

"’I just got a call and your office is on fire’ -- so, I actually got here about the same time the fire trucks did," said Young.

When Young got to his office he saw it up in flames and destroying not only where he worked but also the two apartments on the 2nd floor.

"There was not much of anything that could be saved -- what wasn't destroyed by the ceiling caving in was water damaged," said Angel Glass, Western & Southern District Sales Manager.

The cause of the fire is still unknown but employees say the damage is tough to look at.

Firefighters say the flames were contained to the 2nd floor but the water destroyed all the electronics in the office.

"We don't know how long it's going to take to clean this building up but soon as we find out if we will be able to stay here -- our plan is to stay here but if not we do plan to stay local," said Glass.

While they won’t be serving out of their office for a while, the six employees who worked there will be moved to the Charleston branch for the time being – happy they can still wake up and go to work.

"Material things can be replaced and life can't so fortunately no one lost their life,” said Young.

Keep clicking on WSAZ.com for the latest information.



UPDATE 2/08/2013 @ 12:19 a.m.
ELKVIEW, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Two families were saved from a fire that destroyed their apartment Friday night thanks to a neighbor's heroic efforts.

Jason Huffman lived in an apartment atop the Western and Southern Insurance Building on Elk River Road with his girlfriend. He says he didn't suspect anything was wrong until a neighbor, 22-year-old Bert Scott, came pounding on his door.

"There was no smoke or anything," Huffman said. "If it weren't for [Scott] I might not be here right now."

Scott says he noticed flames shooting from the building from his home across the street and ran inside to alert the tenants.

"My first thought was 'are they going to be Okay,'" he said.

Scott ushered both families in the building to safety.

Firefighters say the flames started on the second floor of the building and were contained there. The apartments were destroyed, but the insurance company downstairs was left with just a little smoke and water damage.

The cause of the fire has not yet been determined.

Keep clicking on WSAZ.com for updates.



ORIGINAL STORY 2/08/2013
ELKVIEW, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Fire late Friday night has destroyed an apartment building that houses an insurance company along Elk River Road, Metro 911 dispatchers say.

The building had collapsed. There were no initial reports of injuries.

The building housed a Western and Southern Insurance business.

The fire was reported about 9:45 p.m. Friday.

We have a crew at the scene.

Keep clicking on WSAZ.com for the latest information.


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