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Crystal Lake automotive shop destroyed in extra-alarm fire

Photo by Alex Vucha

An extra-alarm fire caused over $175,000 in damage to an automotive shop Saturday evening in Crystal Lake.

The Crystal Lake Fire/Rescue Department was called at 4:21 p.m. to a report of a commercial structure fire at Merlin 200,000 Miles Shop, 191 West Virginia Street in Crystal Lake.

Fire crews arrived at the scene and reported thick black smoke coming from the building. Soon after heavy smoke and fire could be seen billowing from the building.

Fire officials said that the fire appeared to have started in an office at one end of the building. It took firefighters nearly 90 minutes to get the fire under control.

There were no civilian or firefighter injuries at the scene. Damage is estimated at over $175,000, according to the Crystal Lake Fire/Rescue Department.

A 2nd alarm was called through the Mutual Aid Box Alarm System (MABAS) which brought in fire departments from Algonquin-Lake in the Hills, Barrington-Countryside, Carpentersville, Cary, East Dundee, Fox River Grove, Huntley, Marengo, McHenry, Nunda Rural, Wauconda, West Dundee, Wonder Lake, and Woodstock.

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The Salvation Army and McHenry County Emergency Management Agency also assisted at the scene. Portions of Route 14 near the scene were closed for several hours during rush hour.

The Crystal Lake Building Department responded to the scene and deemed the structure uninhabitable until repairs are made. The cause of the fire is under investigation.


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