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Midtown auto shop fire sends one to hospital

Midtown auto shop fire sends one to hospital

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A fire at a midtown Billings mechanic shop Friday put one person in the hospital and forced the Billings Police Department to close a city block for nearly three hours while fire crews controlled the blaze.

Smoke billowed from the garage of Extreme Machines on the 1400 block of Central Avenue as Billings Fire Department engines responded to the report of the fire around 6:15 p.m., according to Alan Harper with the BFD.

“Apparently, they were working on some sort of automobile when something flared up,” he said.

Harper said the condition of the employee is unknown, and could not provide any details on the extent of the person’s injuries or the exact cause of the fire. An investigation by a BFD fire marshal is currently underway.

There were no other injuries reported, Harper said. 

Crews with the multiple fire engines that arrived at the scene had the fire under control in about 45 minutes, Harper said, and they prevented it from spreading to the adjoining glass shop while officers kept the road clear. 

“They were able to get the patient to the hospital quickly, and it was a pretty quick knockdown of the fire by the first few engines that got here,” Harper said.

According to a tweet from Billings Police Sgt. Glenn Gunther, all of Central Avenue will open around 9:10 p.m. 

A fire at a home at the end of September put two people in the hospital, one of whom died of severe smoke inhalation. The fire drew almost every engine that the city had to offer. A motorcycle parked in a driveway at a home in the Heights was leaking gasoline and caught fire Oct. 5, causing $60,000 worth of damage. 

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