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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Vandals in the hot seat

Friday, July 7, 2006

Ivy Herron photos

Top: Sara Munoz, of Posey Township Volunteer Fire Department, extinguishes flames that destroyed the men's Porta-Pot Friday at the Optimist's Park in Staunton. A fire was also set in the women's Porta-Pot, but was contained to a roll of toilet paper that was pulled out and extinguished.

Bottom: Sara Munoz, of Posey Township Volunteer Fire Department, rushes to extinguish flames that destroyed a Porta-Pot Friday before the flames could spread to the existing outhouse building at the Optimist's Park in Staunton.

With one Porta-Pot destroyed by fire and another sustaining minor fire damage within hours of being delivered to Optimist Park, Staunton residents are outraged by acts of vandalism.

"It's a shame," Diane Fry said Friday evening, watching firefighters put out the fire. "The damages being done to the park is ruining it for our children."

The park, which is owned by the Breakfast Optimist Club and maintained by the Clay Youth Softball League, is experiencing vandalism problems. Residents say the concession stand has been broken into and vandalized, trash cans have been set on fire, the water spicket was recently damaged and the bathroom facility has been damaged inside, to the point that it is unusable.

Two Porta-Pots were delivered Friday morning at the park for public use during a Saturday morning softball tournament, according to a spokesperson at Sutherland & Sons.

Volunteer firefighters were called to the scene of a small structure fire at the park around 3 p.m., according to Posey Township Assistant Fire Chief Errett Miller.

"The one Porta-Pot was destroyed by fire," he said. "The second one had a small fire in the area of the toilet tissue holder, but it was put out by Dave Fry (a past volunteer fireman) before we arrived."

Flames from the burning Porta-Pot did singe the lower corner on the northwest side of the men's rest room facility, but no other damages were reported.

"Due to the nature of the fire, it will be investigated and I will contact the Clay County Sheriff's Department," Miller said

The cost of fire damages for the two units had not been determined by Sutherland & Sons as of press time.

In search of a cost estimate to replace the destroyed unit, the Brazil Times contacted Satellite Industries, located in Minneapolis, Minn., by phone Friday evening. The company will assemble and deliver a new TuffWay unit to a buyer in Indiana for $750.

A spokesperson for the company said the second unit could possibly be repaired, but if damages were bad enough it might be more cost effective to replace the unit.

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