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ST. GEORGE, Utah (AP) -- Mattresses at a storage unit caught fire Thursday afternoon, causing damage to an adjacent antiques store.
Sparks from grinding on the roof of the storage unit dropped through an air conditioning unit and set the mattresses on fire, said Brent Hafen, engineer for the St. George fire department.
The storage unit, 25 by 50 feet, was stacked with mattresses as high as 12 feet in some places, Hafen said. The smoke damaged almost all of the 16 units in the storage complex, and water damaged five units.
"Nobody was in there, so it got going pretty good before anybody realized what was going on," Hafen said. "There's going to be a pretty good dollar value to it."
The antiques store shared a back wall with the storage unit that caught fire. Several pieces of antique furniture, including an antique piano, were threatened by the blaze.
The fire department stacked the approximately 30 mattresses, some of which were reduced to their coils, outside the unit after the fire.
Don Garrick, owner of Desert Thunder Cycle Works, said his business quickly filled with smoke. Most of the motorcycles he was working on were already outside, but he still tried to quickly remove his other projects.
"We moved stuff until we could not go back in," Garrick said.
(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)