Fire Destroys Beauty Supply Shop in Indiana

ELKHART, Ind. (AP) -- A small explosion preceded a fire that destroyed a beauty supply store, its manager said.

Michael Williams said after the boom, he saw smoke and flames and ran upstairs to his apartment to get his children out of the building Monday.

Two hours later, bursts of smoke were still piping from the burned-out Elkhart Beauty Supply and the second-floor apartment.

A fire investigator has not determined what sparked the two-alarm blaze that interrupted midday traffic and commerce south of the city's downtown. It caused no injuries and was contained to the building where it started, said Elkhart Fire Chief Tony Johnson.

Nearby businesses, including a thrift store and a barbershop, were forced to close early for the day.

Williams said the store had been in business for three years. About three weeks ago, he had smelled smoke in the store and called fire officials, who were unable to determine a cause, Williams said.

Johnson said most of the smoke came from the rear of the building, where Williams said there was an electric control panel.

Information from: The Truth