By Associated Press - Tuesday, January 28, 2020

IMPERIAL, Mo. (AP) - An employee sleeping in an eastern Missouri junk-hauling business has died in a fire.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Bob’s Disposal Services in Imperial was engulfed in flames when firefighters were called before dawn Tuesday. Fire dispatchers told the crews that the victim was an employee who slept in an upstairs loft.

The Jefferson County sheriff’s office has a fire investigator on the scene, and one also is on the way from the state fire marshal’s office.

Sheriff’s office spokesman Grant Bissell confirmed that one person died in the fire. The cause of the blaze is under investigation.

Patricia Grundmeyer, who owns the business with her husband, told the Post-Dispatch that the victim was an employee. She said she told him that he couldn’t live in the building, and that he said he would only stay when he couldn’t get a ride home.She said two employees suffered smoke inhalation in a failed effort to get to the man.

The man’s name wasn’t immediately released.

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