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Cause of Jan. 28 fire still under investigation, no one injured

PIONEER PHOTO: CONNER WILLIAMS - A fire that occurred on the night of Jan. 28 damaged Superior Glass Works, a fiberglass mold and chassis shop in Molalla. One of the garage doors is boarded up with plywood while more than a dozen barrels of flammable materials used to create fiberglass sit outside the shop, some with burn marks on them.

A fire that started around 8:20 p.m. on Jan. 28 damaged much of Superior Glass Works, a fiberglass mold and chassis shop off Ona Way in Molalla.

Molalla fire chief Vince Stafford said the cause of the fire is still under investigation, but it looks like it happened back in the fabrication portion of the shop.

"They had to shore up some of the storage areas to even make it safe to get back in, so that's why it's taking a while to figure out the cause," Stafford said.

The shop contained several large barrels of flammable materials inside used to create fiberglass, and firefighters worked to contain them, eventually putting the fire out after a couple of hours, according to Stafford. He said firefighters were on scene for about six hours.

Outside the shop, more than a dozen of the barrels sit upright as a few showed the signs of flame contact. The shop's southern side garage door is boarded up with plywood where the flames left scorch marks on the door and the wall around it.

There were no injuries involved in the fire, but it was a high-dollar loss despite fire officials managing to save a good portion of the shop.

"It was custom work so a lot of the stuff that was destroyed was one-of-a-kind custom molds," Stafford said.

Despite the fire, Superior is still partly functional. On their website, a message reads "[Due] to a fire in our manufacturing facility we will not be taking orders for fiberglass parts until further notice. Our chassis shop is fully operational."

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