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Fire Hits Veterinarian's Office

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CHAPEL HILL — Investigators say they have not yetdetermined what caused a fire that killed one dog and a cat and left onefirefighter slightly injured Monday night.

Twenty-one animals were rescued in the fire that broke out in a ChapelHill veterinary office on Franklin Street. Veterinarian Ken Redman saysthat's because of some fine work on the part of firefighters.

A passing motorist called 9-1-1 and said he had spotted smoke comingfrom the back wing of Vine Veterinary Hospital. Fire investigators saythey would like to talk to the person who made that call, since heavy fogand the location of the firee in the rear of the building made itdifficult for firefighters to spot when they arrived looking for smoke.

Assistant Fire Marshal, Capt. Larry Johnson, says they would like forthe person to call back and give them more information.

Once saved, the rescued animals seemed unperturbed. They were each putin plastic carriers to be moved to temporary quarters. Some were boarded at a nearby kennel while others spent the night with clinic employees.

Three Chapel Hill fire units and two rescue units answered the call.One firefighter suffered a back spasm as he was carrying animals out ofthe building.

The fire reignited Tuesday morning causing firefighters to return tothe scene.

Fire officials say they don't expect to announce a probably cause ofthe fire before Thursday, but say they have not ruled out the possibilityof arson.

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