The fire began when the owner, Rick Bell, was installing rubber roofing on the building using a small torch to heat the materials. He was 3 feet from completing the new roof when the torch ignited a birds nest in a previously patched over old chimney.
"I was pretty sure that the fire wasn't going to go anywhere, but you have to be extra careful with these older buildings" Bell said. He credits having a fireman for a son for being safety conscious. "I called just to be safe."
Bell's quick response in reporting the fire was praised by Fire Chief Tobey Archer at the scene.
"Mr. Bell did the right thing in reporting the fire as quickly as he did," Archer said. Due to extreme temperatures heating the roofing materials and the wind, the fire could have gotten out of hand very quickly and endangered the entire block. "The fire was growing in intensity by the time we arrived."
Firemen Roy Kellar and Darry Parr were first to reach the roof upon arrival.
"It sure was impressive to look at," said Bell, who was on the roof with Kellar and Parr as they put the fire out with hand extinguishers.
Officers from the Brazil City Police Department were on the scene to direct the backed-up traffic on National Avenue for about a half an hour until the firetrucks left the scene.
Bell said that his customers need not worry and that upcoming events scheduled at Traditions will not be affected by the fire.