Blaze destroys Mt. Eden Volunteer Fire Department


by Brooke Hasch and Rodney Spencer

Posted on August 5, 2014 at 9:00 AM

Updated Tuesday, Aug 5 at 6:10 PM

Mt. Eden Volunteer Fire Department

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- Fire investigators continue to look into what caused an early morning fire that destroyed the Mount Eden Volunteer Fire Department Tuesday.

The fire ignited around 5 a.m. setting flame to the entire building and everything inside it, causing explosions from tires and an air compressor.

The loss was felt across the community.

"It's very shocking. It really threw me. To hear the tones go off and hear them dispatching you to your firehouse on fire is something I never want to hear again and never thought I would hear," Lt. John Butler, with Mount Eden Volunteer Fire Department, said.

Neighbors watched from the street, as their safety net burned to the ground. Betty Kerns was the first to call 911.

"I said, the fire department's on fire," Kerns said.

"It's very disheartening to pull up and see the entire firehouse on fire," Butler said.

More than 50 firefighters from across Shelby and Spencer counties responded to the fire. The damage was extensive.

"We weren't able to save any of our equipment," Butler said.

Once the smoke cleared, millions of dollars of new equipment and gear lay charred and mangled. Firefighters are thankful no one was inside at the time.

While the cause of the fire is unknown, these firefighters are looking ahead.

"Start rebuilding," Butler said.

However, neighbors can't help but wonder who will now come to their rescue?

"When you look at your kids and grandkids and you think, OK, how long will it take if our house catches fire?" Kerns asked.

"If there is a fire in Mount Eden, we've got help coming automatically, instead of us calling for help. It's automatically dispatched. No worries," Butler said.

A second volunteer station is located in Southville, where the department's two remaining fire trucks were housed, spared from the fire. However, Butler says both Shelby and Spencer Counties will respond to Mount Eden emergencies during this rebuilding process. The response time isn't expected to change.

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