Fireworks warehouse burns in Bastrop County

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by HEATHER KOVAR

KVUE

Posted on June 30, 2013 at 12:46 PM

Updated Sunday, Jun 30 at 8:50 PM

Fireworks explosion

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BASTROP — Bastrop County Sheriff's Office officials say the American Fireworks warehouse at Highway 71 and Highway 21 caught fire just before 11 a.m. Sunday.

Employees were in the warehouse when the fire started, but were able to get away safely. No injuries were reported.

Investigators weren't sure what caused the fire, but said there was no explosion — just an amount of fireworks went off when the fire started.

At one point, firefighters from all nine departments in Bastrop County were at the scene, along with some units from neighboring Travis County. Others stood by to cover the area as the fireworks incident was addressed.

Firefighters didn't know what was inside the burning building when they arrived, so they didn't go in.

Chester Davis, the owner of American Fireworks, said he's been in the business for four decades, and had never previously had a fire. He thinks something must have malfunctioned, and noted that they built this warehouse away from other structures for a reason.

"Everybody is safe here; we got everybody out," Davis said. "It's mostly paper products, really. It's not really involving anything else other than that, but it did burn up our fireworks show for tonight for the church, and it burned up the trailers that we had lined up for the Fourth of July.

Davis said the show was for the Hyde Park Baptist Church at The Quarries, and had to be canceled.

As for his business, he said he has insurance and is just happy no one was hurt.

The eastbound lanes of Highway 71 were shut down for several hours while fire departments worked jointly to put out the flames.

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