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Fire destroys East Kingsford lumber mill

February 13, 2012
Lisa Hoffmanm - Staff writer , The Daily News

IRON MOUNTAIN - No one was injured when a lumber company in Breitung Township went up in flames on Saturday.

Breitung Township Fire Chief Jeff Iverson said firefighters from the East Kingsford Fire Station were paged to Twin Pine Lumber Co., 625 John St., at 4:16 p.m.

Due to strong winds and the extremely low temperatures on Saturday, Iverson said firefighters could not control the fire.

Article Photos

Breitung Township Fire Department crews battle a blaze at the Twin Pine Lumber Co. in East Kingsford on Saturday. No one was injured in the blaze.

"It was built out of a wood frame with a metal roof, and we could not control it," Iverson said. "There was a problem with the electrical service over the top of the building, and we had to get the power turned off before we could squirt water into the building."

Quinnesec and North Breitung Fire Stations were also called to assist with the fire.

We Energies was called to the scene and cut power to 60 residences.

"Once we got in there and squirted, it was too late," Iverson said.

Firefighters controlled and contained the fire to the lumber company's building.

A trailer that was full of sawdust was also lost in the blaze.

"It's a total loss," Iverson said.

Iverson said once the fire was extinguished, the power company moved lines and installed a temporary power

pole to get electricity to those who were without power for three hours Saturday night.

"We were called back for rekindles about three times overnight and again Sunday morning," Iverson said. "We finally got all done about 1 p.m. Sunday. It's smoking again, and we may be back out there again today (Monday)."

The lumber company, owned by Denny and Cindy Trewartha, cuts lumber from logs.

Cindy Trewartha declined to comment on the fire at this time.

Iverson noted Trewartha's insurance company will assess the damage for a cost estimate.

All machinery was lost in the blaze, but firefighters did manage to save a couple of buildings, Iverson said.

Kingsford Public Safety, Michigan State Police Iron Mountain Post, Breitung Township Department of Public Works, Michcon, the power company, and Charter Cable assisted with the fire.

Iverson added that Central Supermarket donated groceries to the fire department to provide nourishment during the night.

A cause of the fire may be ruled electrical.

The fire remains under investigation.

Lisa M. Hoffmann's e-mail address is



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