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Westclox fire continues to burn while two teens face charges

Posted by wlpo on January 1, 2012

The fire continues to burn at the former Westclox building.  The blaze that was reported minutes before midnight Saturday will likely have to burn itself out according to Assistant Peru Fire Chief Jim Duncan.   People were reporting smoke in the area but firefighters arrived to find it fully involved and out of control.

Duncan says the three buildings make up the property and that it was the middle one that was burning.  He says that building has pretty much collapsed.  He says they knew they weren’t going to send firefighters inside.

Rolls of film, plastic, and some Styrofoam were among the materials burning.  He says there weren’t any chemicals.

Several blocks north and west of the building were evacuated but most of those areas have been reopened.  Several homes on Franklin Street will remain evacuated.

La Salle Firefighter Steve Smith had to undergo surgery after being injured during the set up according to La Salle Fire Chief Andy Bacidore.  He’s in good condition at Illinois Valley Community Hospital.

A 17 year old boy from La Salle and a 15 year old boy from Peru have been charged with aggravated arson.

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