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BREAKING NEWS Two morning blazes test firefighters



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Firefighters head into the garage at Lamountainís Service Center on Route 169 in Charlton, where a fire in one of the bays caused heavy smoke to billow out the doors yesterday morning, not long after emergency crews had battled a brush fire on Davidson Road. Ryan Grannan-Doll. (click for larger version)
November 11, 2009
BY RYAN GRANNAN-DOLL

STAFF WRITER

CHARLTON — Two separate fires struck different locations this morning, keeping area firefighters on their toes.

A two-alarm fire broke out at LaMountain's Service Station on Route 169 (21 Southbridge Road) around 9:45 a.m. while business operator Peter J. Boria, a town selectman, was working on a truck.

Boria said he was removing a gas tank from a truck when some of it spilled onto a work light.

"Once the gas hit the light, you could hear it pop," Boria said at the scene. "Everything got engulfed."

Boria, 35, and two of his friends with him at the time fled the building. He said he was lucky to be alive.

Having not spoken yet with Boria yet, Fire Chief Charles E. Cloutier said his department's Fire Investigation Unit had not determined a cause.

Southbridge Fire Department crews also responded to the scene and helped bring the fire under control by 10:35 a.m. Cloutier did not estimate the monetary damage, but said "I would say it is a significant dollar loss."

"Excellent job by all the guys working today," Cloutier said.

Firefighters used a Charlton tower truck to cut a hole in the roof, which Cloutier said was done to release any trapped smoke.

Earlier in the morning, about five miles away, some 200 acres of forest went ablaze when a brush fire broke out adjacent to Davidson Road off of Oxbow Road.

The fire started around 5:16 a.m.

Leicester, Oxford and Southbridge crews responded to the blaze and brought it under control by around 7:35 p.m., according to Oxford Deputy Chief Cleighton Tourtellotte. The fire did not come near any of the nearby homes on Priscilla Lane. A cause was not immediately determined.

The effected area is lined with vehicle-sized trails and some junk, which fell victim to flames.

Nobody was injured in either blaze.

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