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State official- 'Nearly impossible' to figure out cause of Elks

by Darlene J. Taylor

STAFF WRITER

CLARKSBURG -- Assistant State Fire Marshal Mackey Ayersman said there was not enough left of the Elks Lodge to determine what caused the Saturday fire that destroyed the building.

Danny Hamrick, the city's fire inspector, "was one of the first to make entry to make a determination. The entire second floor, which I understand was the point of origin, is gone. It would be nearly impossible to determine the exact cause," Ayersman said.

That means the cause of the blaze will remain "undetermined," as predicted by Clarksburg Fire Chief Joe Gonzalez on Monday.

Meanwhile, demolition crews worked Tuesday to take down the 60-foot chimney that officials said was a safety hazard.

Next door, rolls of carpet and damaged ceiling tile were being piled into trucks from the Masonic Lodge, which sustained heavy damage from smoke and water.

Staff writer Darlene J. Taylor can be reached at 626-1403 or by e-mail at dtaylor@exponent-telegram.com

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