Les Schwab fire closes Highway 30 - KPTV - FOX 12

Serious fire at Les Schwab in St. Helens closes Highway 30

Posted: Updated: Aug 24, 2012 06:03 PM
ST. HELENS, OR (KPTV) -

A serious fire at the Les Schwab Tire Center in St. Helens sent thick black smoke pouring into the sky Friday evening.

The fire started just after 4 p.m. in the shop area of the business. Hours later, it was still going strong.

Scappoose firefighters said a customer first noticed something burning and alerted employees.

Everyone was safely evacuated out of the store.

The fire shut down Highway 30 near Bennett Road in both directions.

The area is part of the Hood to Coast Relay.

Organizers said runners are being re-routed onto Millard Road in order to get to exchange point 17, known as the Safeway Exchange.

The detour is likely going to be in place for the rest of the race.

Police have closed Millard to traffic and race organizers are on scene making sure all the runners go the right direction.

Columbia County Rider Transit busses were being detoured around the fire.

Columbia River PUD said they had to shut off the power line running in front of Les Schwab. It has left 850 customers without power.

The agency was able to have the power almost fully restored by 6:30 p.m. Friday.

Firefighters said the fire could burn for "hours, even days" at this point.

The cause is not yet known.

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