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Fire destroys three mobile homes

By By Connie Nowlin Managing editor
Trucks, two from Atmore and three from Poarch responded Monday to the second early morning fire inside 10 days. Firefighters from Nokomis and Little Rock
The call came in at 5:36 a.m. that there was fire at Harold Allen's Mobile Home Factory Outlet 323 S. Main St.
When the first truck arrived, it found two mobile homes fully engulfed and another in the early stages of burning.
All three homes were destroyed.
Mike Allen, whose father owns the company, said that the value of the homes would be established by the company's insurance carrier.
"It is unfortunate that the largest home damaged was one that had already been sold," Allen said. "I am sure the family that chose it is discouraged, but we have others for them to pick from."
But Allen was quick to praise the firefighters who mustered out to bring the blaze under control.
"They stayed with the fire," he said. McGhee said the fire was under control by 10 a.m., but Allen called the firefighters back about 2 p.m. because it had begun to smoke and smolder again.
"They did a real good job, and they have helped us out before," Allen said.
The fire is under investigation by the state fire marshal's office. That office is called in whenever a fire results in injury or death, is suspicious in nature, or investigation is requested by local law enforcement.
Employees of the mobile home sales office said that there has been an ongoing problem at that location with vandalism including persons breaking into the homes during the night or in inclement or cold weather. "Vagrants have been caught before in some of the homes," Allen said.
Atmore Fire Department Chief Gerry McGhee said the investigators from the fire marshal's office said the fire had to have been set because there was no electricity to the homes and no furniture in the homes. The fire is still under investigation.
The first fire occurred Sept. 18 at Frylink's Used and New Tire Co., at the intersection of Brooks and Main streets, less than a block from the mobile home lot.
That fire was also investigated by the fire marshal's office, but as of press time, no findings had been released from the investigation on that blaze. It is unknown if the two fires are connected.