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Visitors 41
Modified 29-Aug-12
Created 29-Aug-12
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On Friday night, November 6, 2009 fire roared through a part of the abandoned Merrimac Paper Co. complex on South Canal Street. The blaze was reported shortly before 7:00 p.m. and quickly escalated to three alarms. The mill building is approximately 200,000 square feet and has been boarded up and condemned for the past few years. On arrival of companies the thought of homeless people being inside was a thought of the firefighters as vagrants have been known to take up residency inside. But firefighters did not go deep inside the building due to the concerns of the roof would collapse. At about 9:00 p.m. the roof finally came crashing in with an explosion-like sound. The flames at this point were shooting up over 150 feet into the sky. Lawrence had their 85-foot snorkel positioned up in front of the building pouring water into building with little effect. Mutual aid engines continued to arrive on scene and feed the ladder pipes in effort to prevent the fire from getting into another section of the complex which was a two-story brick complex with five floors on the back side. Heavy fire burned through the roof for over three plus hours. Fire crews remained on scene throughout the night and into the morning. It is unknown what started the fire as it is under investigation. According to website documents the mill was constructed in 1866 and closed in June of 2005

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