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Times photo by Kimm Anderson, kanderson@stcloudtimes.com St. Cloud Fire Marshall John Steinbach photographs the scene of a fire Friday morning at Alpine Custom Woodworking at the intersection of Stearns County roads 1 and 5 near St. Stephen.

Flames engulf site of area woodworking business
Damages reach $1.1 million; cause unknown

By Kari Petrie kpetrie@stcloudtimes.com

Published: April 08. 2006 1:30AM
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ST. STEPHEN An early morning fire Friday caused $1.1 million in damage at a woodworking business in Brockway Township.

Firefighters were called to the scene at 2:10 a.m. Friday. The Alpine Custom Woodworking building, 5502 Stearns County Road 5, was fully engulfed when they arrived, Stearns County Sheriff John Sanner said.

St. Stephen Fire Chief Ray Trobec did not return phone calls Friday.

The State Fire Marshal is investigating the blaze because of the large amount of damage. The fire started in the production area of the building, near where the company does its painting and staining, Fire Marshall John Steinbach said.

No one was in the building when the fire started. The cause is unknown at this time.

Steven John Prom, 40, of Cold Spring owns the business. Prom said 30 people work in the building, but no one will lose their jobs.

The business will be able to continue as usual because Prom has several other facilities. He said he did not lose any information that was stored in the building.

"That was the best that could happen in a fire," he said of salvaging customer information.

The building will have to be torn down, but Prom said he will rebuild.

Firefighters from Sartell, Waite Park, St. Cloud, St. Joseph, Rice and Sauk Rapids helped extinguish the fire, Sanner said.

Deputies closed several roads around the fire Friday morning.

Times reporter David Unze contributed to this report.


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