All in one crash: apartment fire, broken gas line, arcing power lines

jwarren@herald-leader.comMarch 10, 2014 

Nicholasville firefighters had to battle flames and arcing power lines Sunday night after a car set an apartment house on fire.

"You couldn't write up a scenario like it," Deputy Fire Chief Kevin Baker said Monday.

No one was injured, but the car was destroyed, and two occupants of the four-plex apartment house had to move out because of the damage to the building, Baker said.

The blaze occurred about 9:30 p.m. Sunday on South Third Street.

Baker said two people were driving past when their car ran off the street and hit the apartment house's gas meter. The meter happened to be directly under the power lines that carried electricity into the building, Baker said.

Baker said the impact sparked a fire at the gas meter, also knocking down the power lines, which began arcing and shooting out sparks.

"They were arcing all of the time we were fighting the fire," he said.

Nevertheless, firefighters managed to extinguish the fire, limiting damage mainly to one unit of the four-plex apartment. The other three units sustained smoke damage, Baker said.

Two occupants will have to find lodging elsewhere at least temporarily, he said.

"The car was consumed in the fire," he said.

Jim Warren: (859) 231-3255.

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