Gutherie Lumber Company in Cecil catches fire

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Published: Jun. 23, 2022 at 8:39 PM EDT
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CECIL, Ga. (WALB) -Fire personnel worked to contain a fire that happened at Guthrie Lumber Company located on Union Street on Wednesday, according to Cook County Fire Chief Johnny West.

The Cecil Fire Department, Lowndes County Fire Department, East Berrien Fire Department, Brooks County Fire Department, and the Georgia Forestry were on the scene. Nine different agencies assisted.

What caused a South Georgia wood mill to go up in flames is still being investigated. Property owners and employees say there was an equipment malfunction that started the fire.

No injuries were reported.

The spokesperson for the Georgia Forestry Commission says it could be several days for the smoke to die down because of the extremely high temperatures.

“With the persisting weather conditions that we’ve had, this fire was extremely hot. There were multiple large wood piles in the sawmill yard,” he says.

Guthrie Lumber Company is a pillar in the Cecil community. It’s been around for over 30 years. Several people say this is a tragic loss. It’s a family-owned business that services companies needing construction materials and supplies. The company’s manager, Sharla Guthrie says this business means a lot to her and says the fire made a huge life change.

“Right now, we’re out of a job and our employees also. It pretty much destroyed everything. We could save like three pieces of equipment and a log loader,” she added.

The company’s owners and its employees are asking the community for prayers and patience. They have high hopes of getting the mill back up and running.

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