Mid-Michigan steel company catches fire - WNEM TV 5

Mid-Michigan steel company catches fire

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(Source: Jonathan Mathey) (Source: Jonathan Mathey)

A Mid-Michigan steel company is a total loss after a fire Friday afternoon.

It happened at C & S Steel in Ithaca about 5:15 p.m. 

Firefighters were on the scene for three hours battling the flames. One firefighter was taken to the hospital for heat-related issues, but is expected to be fine.

No one was inside the building when it caught fire.

Photos and videos posted to the TV5 Facebook page show the flames.

The owners of C & S Steel said the building was used for storage and some residential steel work.

The Klagg family was nearby when the fire overtook the building.

"We were sitting at the building next door and we could feel the heat and you could hear a few explosions in there," Bill Klagg said.

The Ithaca Fire Department arrived to the scene while the building was fully engulfed.

"Quite a rapid advancing fire," Fire Chief Dave Nelson said.

Jack Hirschman and his family are the owners of C & S Steel. He said they had just locked up the building for the weekend when he got a call about the fire.

Hirschman said they did some welding earlier in the day, but they're not sure if that's what caused the fire.

Nelson said the heat was a challenge while battling the fire.

"A firefighter can't stand for a prolonged amount of time at the end of the house, 15 to 20 minutes and then it's time to give them a break otherwise they get overheated," Nelson said.

C & S Steel will be open Monday and operate out of its two other buildings.

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