Henson’s Inc. loses building to fire

Published 2:35 pm Wednesday, July 9, 2008

A building that houses equipment at Hensons&squo;, Inc. went up in flames the night of the Fourth of July, destroying trucks and other equipment worth an estimated $400,000.

The Tryon Fire Department was dispatched around 2:55 a.m. Saturday to 105 Ridge Road in Tryon and arrived to find the building fully engulfed in flames.

Initial 911 callers reported loud explosions in the area, according to a press release from the Tryon Fire Department. Neighbors reported being awoken by the explosions and feeling their homes shake. Officials say the noises and shaking could have been caused by exploding propane and acetylene tanks or tires on the large trucks bursting, but the cause of the fire is currently unknown.

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There were approximately ten trucks in the large building, two tractor trailers, service trucks, backhoes and dump trucks, one of which Hensons&squo; had purchased only recently.

Tryon Fire Chief Joey Davis says firefighters from Tryon were assisted by Landrum, Campobello and Gowensville fire departments from South Carolina and from Columbus, Saluda, Mill Spring and Green Creek fire departments in Polk County. Assistance was also provided from the Polk County Sheriff&squo;s Office, the Tryon Police Department, the Polk County Chapter of the American Red Cross, Polk County Emergency Services and Landrum Rescue.

&dquo;Firefighters fought the blaze for several hours and finally extinguished flames around 8 a.m.,&dquo; Davis said. &dquo;The cause of the fire is under investigation by the joint agencies of the Tryon Fire Department, Polk County Sheriff&squo;s Office, Tryon Police Department, Polk County Arson Strike Team, and North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation.&dquo;

No injuries were reported, according to Davis.