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Fire Engulfs Car Service, Burns Cars

By Brittany Nicholson
By bnicholson@wbbjtv.com

CARROLL COUNTY, Tenn. -- Anytime temperatures drop, firefighters warn about the dangers heat sources can bring. A Carroll County family sadly saw that first hand on Saturday.

Tony Dill and his family are devastated. They lost their family business they have been building for the past five years.

Dill's son, T.J., who works down the road, was almost speechless when he saw the damage.

"I wasn't expecting everything to be gutted," he said.

T.J. said a wood burning heater started the fire as his dad and brother worked on a car. His father's first reaction was to save the client's car.

"It definitely could have ended a different way, with him trying to pull the car out and having part of the roof fall on him," T.J. said.

The two were able to safely escape. Fire officials said this fire was hotter than normal, hot enough to melt the front end off a car that sat about 20 feet from the building.

"The building had a lot of tires and flammables in it. It's just hard to get it under control," firefighter Richie Matthews said.

Fire officials said it took just 15 minutes for the entire building to go up in flames with two cars and a motorcycle inside.

Despite the family's loss, T.J. said his family will find a way to make it through and remain positive.

"To have that lost in a matter of hours, it's just devastating. This is their livelihood. But everybody come out safe. So that's something you can be thankful for," T.J. Dill said.

Fire officials say using wood or oil burning heaters will be inevitable over the next few days with freezing temperatures. They say to make sure you keep a close eye on them and don't leave them unattended.
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