The State Fire Marshal's office has determined the fire on the Gallatin square Wednesday to be accidental, caused by a suspended natural gas heater that malfunctioned.
That's according Gallatin Fire Protection District Chief Doug Hamilton.
The location was the Shelter Insurance office where the fire started. Nobody was in the office at the time of the fire during the noon hour Wednesday.
The fire destroyed the building housing Shelter Insurance and Eilene's Beauty Shop.
Hamilton described damage to State Farm Insurance as moderate---mostly from water, with fire damage on the 2nd floor and roof area. He said State Farm did not lose any equipment.
The Fire Chief listed damage to Flowers Unlimited as moderate water damage and light smoke damage.
He said a vacant apartment was destroyed.
Hamilton said the total dollar loss to the properties was around $300,000 dollars.
Missouri Department of Public Safety Communications Director, Mike O'Connell, described damage to Shelter Insurance and the beauty shop as total losses, with State Farm Insurance and Flowers Unlimited receiving major damage.
Gallatin Fire Protection District firefighters remained on the scene until shortly after 2 o'clock yesterday afternoon. Some 75 firefighters from 13 departments responded to the blaze. The last unit from outside Gallatin left around 9:30 Wednesday night. Gallatin Fire Protection firefighters remained overnight and yesterday because of smoldering and hot spots. In addition, they sprayed down the debris when a trachoe was used during the investigation.
A firefighter was hit on the helmet by debris Wednesday afternoon and was treated at the scene. Hamilton said the firefighter was not really injured and was fine. There were no other injuries reported.
Businesses on the block, not affected by the fire, were able to reopen.