Fire destroyed a building on Simpson Avenue Sunday that had been used recently as a tire business, but for many years before that was an auto dealership and repair shop run by the late Stan Trohimovich.
The fire started sometime around noon at 1521 Simpson Ave. in the grass located around the building, officials said. Firefighters received a call about the grass fire at 12:30 p.m., and made it to the scene two to three minutes later. By the time they got to the building, the fire was inside the structure and it was completely involved.
“We went defensive very rapidly on the fire, our primary concern was Duffy’s (Restaurant),” said Battalion Fire Chief Damon Lillybridge, of the Aberdeen Fire Department.
It took firefighters one hour to bring the fire under control, but they combed through the scene for several hours more looking for hotspots and unextinguished embers.
The building, once a Volvo dealership run by Trohimovich (a well-known tax protester) and later used as a tire store, had been most recently used for storage, Lillybridge said, but any cars and all but a handful of tires had been moved out of the structure. The open construction style of the building, combined with its age and petroleum residue left there may have contributed to the speed of the fire. The structure was a total loss.
A cause of the fire has not been confirmed, but Lillybridge said that most likely something flammable was discarded by a passerby on a the grass that borders the building.
“We don’t know how the grass caught fire, we have to assume it was a discarded cigarette,” he said. “But there is no way of telling.”
There were no injuries to any of the residents who live near the structure, but one firefighter twisted his ankle at the scene. He was treated and finished his shift. Lillybridge said 24 Aberdeen firefighters worked on the fire as well as two firefighters manning a truck from Hoquiam.