Barber shop destroyed by fire in downtown Alma - WNEM TV 5

Barber shop destroyed by fire in downtown Alma

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Source: Alma Police Department Source: Alma Police Department
Source: WNEM Source: WNEM
Source: Alma Police Department Source: Alma Police Department

A Mid-Michigan barber shop was destroyed by fire early Tuesday morning. 

Alma Public Safety Director Mark Williams told TV5 a passerby spotted the fire about 3:40 a.m. at Superior Street Barber Shop on W. Superior Street in downtown Alma, two blocks east of Business 27.

Fire officials said the barber shop is a total loss. Nearby businesses are dealing with smoke, water and fire damage as well. Alma Public Schools also announced a two-hour delay due to a power outage at Pine Avenue School. 

Miguel Ortiz, the owner of Superior Street Barber Shop, said he and his wife bought the building two years ago. They remodeled the business and opened the barber shop about 17 months ago. 

“It is scary, it is scary. But I’m an optimistic person. I give thanks to God and he’ll see us through it and help us get back on our feet.”

He said he has insurance and plans to rebuild. 

“We’re coming back,” Ortiz said. “I’m not giving up. I love this community.” 

Ortiz said he believes the fire started in the back of the building.

“It didn’t look too bad from the front, but the back is pretty much gone; total loss,” said Ortiz.

Investigators are still trying to determine the cause. 

Williams said no injuries were reported.

“I’m glad no firefighters got hurt, nobody was in the building,” Ortiz told TV5. 

The community is rallying around the Ortiz family. A neighboring business, Treasures, is opening their doors and offering some space to allow them to continue cutting hair until they get back on their feet.

“Alma is a great community and a lot of people have called and offered support and monetary funds. That’s why I’m going to rebuild in Alma.”

The fire is the second major downtown fire in Alma in the past year or so. A former business owner was sentenced to up to five years in prison in February for starting a March 2016 fire that destroyed two historic buildings and damaged a third building.

>>>Slideshow: Fire at Alma barber shop<<<

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