- Associated Press - Thursday, December 29, 2016

CLEVELAND, Okla. (AP) - A massive blaze that destroyed a Pawnee County aerospace manufacturing building could have a large financial impact on the city of Cleveland, Oklahoma.

Fire Chief Ryan Murray said his department received a report of a fire about 1:30 p.m. Tuesday just south of the city at ICES Corp. Two employees were taken to a Tulsa hospital with injuries that weren’t considered life-threatening, the Tulsa World (https://bit.ly/2hx3WrZ ) reported.

“It pretty much turned into an oven inside of the building,” Murray said. “These metal buildings are pretty much like an oven. You can’t hardly get on the roof of them to open them up, to get all the heat and the smoke out. That was our biggest deal, the smoke and the heat.”

ICES manufactures airplane parts and employs about 35 people. The company has been in the Cleveland area for at least 16 years.

Mayor Brian Torres said the company is one of the city’s largest employers and has an estimated payroll of $1 million. He said the fire is “a major impact” on the city, because it’s unlikely the employees can go back to work.

Torres said ICES owner Mike Mills would like to stay in the area, but the company would need a temporary place to work until rebuilding can happen. The mayor estimated rebuilding could take at least a year.

Mills founded ICES in his garage in 1994.


Information from: Tulsa World, https://www.tulsaworld.com

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