“I was just sitting here at my desk, just paying bills and my son, my 6-year-old, was sitting out in the shop. He comes in and says, ‘Mommy it’s getting really smoky out in the shop,’ and all I did was turn around and looked out the window and I could see it was just black out there. I grabbed Peyton and I said ,’We gotta get out of here,’ ran out to the parking lot and he started crying and screaming,” says Sheryl Quint.
It was Wednesday night at the Siouxland Towing company that a family’s livelihood went up in flames.
“It happened so fast, I just turned around to look at the building and I’ll bet you those flames were 20 feet high,” says Quint.
For four hours, fire crews attempted to put out the flames. Quint says although this is a traumatic hit to her family’s business, she’s just glad no one was hurt.
“Things, possessions can be replaced. Just got to build it up, make it better and move on. That’s all we can do,” says Quint.
Most of the inside of the shop is in fairly good condition still, but the impound lot suffered the most damage.
Fire crews were on scene investigating a possible cause of the fire Thursday morning and after several hours of investigation, they closed the case and settled it as an accident and an undetermined cause. However, the fire chief has some speculations.
“It was possible a vehicle fire that started all this. It was parked close to an overhang on this building. It’s a wood frame and had a lot of fuel, a lot of oil that was stored in drums, plastic containers, and crates, and all the vehicles that were close by, adjacent to that, caught fire that added to the fuel,” says South Sioux City Fire Chief Clint Merithew.
Despite the flames that torched many of the vehicles in the lot, less than 24 hours later, Siouxland Towing is back open for business.
Had it not been for the quick response rate of the South Sioux Fire Department, Quint says she doesn’t know what would have happened.
“If it wasn’t for them, this building would be gone,” says Quint.