August 27, 2008 Edition

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Hoxie building fire
being investigated

Following a fire that burned the Grisham Farm Products, Inc. building, located on Northeast Second Street in Hoxie, to the ground, an investigative service has been hired by the insurance company to study the cause of the fire.

Five fire departments responded to the fire on Aug. 18, but it wasn't fully extinguished until Aug. 20. The fire was fully put out to allow insurance officials to collect evidence, according to Hoxie Mayor Donnie Roberts.

Grisham Farm Products, Inc. used the building, formerly used as the Farm Service fertilizer facility, as a warehouse to store refuse cereal and chips to be processed into chicken feed. The Hoxie branch of their company was a primary storehouse, and they plan to put up a new metal building within the next two months, said Muriel Allison of Walnut Ridge, plant manager.

Mayor Roberts said Argenia Insurance hired the investigative service to determine the cause of the fire, and members of the Hoxie Fire Department are also assisting the team.

"If the insurance company determines the fire was intentionally set, the police will open a case," Roberts said.

Owner Lexie Grisham said he believes it was an electrical fire but that they are waiting to hear from the insurance adjustor.

"An estimate of the damages is still being formulated, but it's likely to be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars," Grisham said.

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