Lee County's new road equipment garage is nearing completion at just the right time.
The county's old garage, built in the 1940s, was extensively damaged by fire Wednesday afternoon. The cause has not been determined, and the state fire marshal's office is investigating.
"We lost a few tools, but fortunately they were able to get most of our large equipment out of the building before it was damaged," Lee County Judge-Executive Steve Mays said. "We're just glad no one was hurt. Everybody responded pretty quickly."
A mechanic and an assistant were working in the garage when they noticed smoke coming from a bathroom about 2 p.m. Wednesday, Mays said. The garage, formerly owned by the state, is on U.S. 52 in Beattyville.
Mays said he will confer with the county fiscal court on whether to repair the building or raze it and use the property for some other purpose.
The county's new equipment garage, being built at a cost of about $500,000, is about 150 yards from the old one. It should be ready in four to six weeks, Mays said.