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Fire destroys Durham businesses, damages church

An early-morning fire destroyed two businesses and damaged a church in a building complex along East Club Boulevard in Durham Saturday, fire officials said.

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DURHAM, N.C. — An early-morning fire destroyed two businesses and damaged a church in Durham Saturday, fire officials said.

Fire investigator Jody Orton said it appeared the blaze started between an auto-accessories store and Eagle Water Systems, a water-treatment company, at 2301 E. Club Blvd.

The call came in at 1:43 a.m., said Battalion Chief William Roberts said. Thirty-one firefighters responded and labored about 35 minutes to bring the blaze under control.

A haz-mat crew was called out to deal with muriatic acid stored at the offices of Eagle Water Systems, but no problems were reported, police said.

Space belonging to the Lord House Prophetic Ministry sustained smoke and water damage. Roberts said the church was partially protected by a firewall between it and the other businesses.

“The fire was huge. It was really huge,” said Madge Joyner, member of the Lord House Prophetic Ministry.

Joyner was among more than a dozen church members who were holding a late night prayer service when another member realized the neighboring businesses were burning.

“And he ran back in here and told us, 'Ya'll get out. Ya’ll get out. There’s a fire,'” Joyner said.

The owner of the car accessories shop said he is not sure if he will reopen. He started his business just two months ago.

No injuries were reported from the fire.

“It was unreal. Something I’ve never experienced,” Joyner said.

Orton said the cause of the fire hasn't been determined.


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