Fire Destroys Alabama Outdoor Furniture Plant

COLUMBIANA, Ala. (AP) -- Several firefighters were treated for smoke inhalation and heat exhaustion from battling a fire that destroyed an outdoor furniture plant in Columbiana.

The Saturday morning blaze at Summer Classics caused no injuries. The nearly 130,000 square- foot building housed three different operations.

``Fire was already coming through the roof when we arrived about 8 a.m.,'' said Columbiana Volunteer Fire Department Chief Johnny Howard.

Nearly a dozen Shelby County fire departments took about five hours to bring the fire under control. The plant was full of a lot of card board boxes and more than 2,000 tires caught fire at the rear of the building.

Summer Classics owner Bew White said the building contained a sewing factory for Summer Classics patio furniture, a warehouse for sister company Winter Classics that makes fireplace tools and screens, and a warehouse for an unrelated tire company.

White said he would try to relocate his 50 employees to another production center.

``We have millions of dollars of orders waiting on cushions,'' White said.

The state fire marshal's office began an investigation into the cause of the blaze, about two blocks south of the Columbiana Court House.