COLLINS, MS (WDAM) - A staple store in Covington County went up in flames on Sunday night. The Collins Fire Department responded to reports of a fire just after 10 p.m. at Shirley’s of Collins.
“The building does appear to be a total loss,” said Collins Fire Department fire chief John Pope. “It was three-fourths involved upon arrival and the fire was progressively moving to the north end of the building.”
The business is about a 55,000 to 60,000 square-foot commercial building that sells clothes, furniture, rugs, home décor, fabric, flowers, floral arrangements, luggage, accessories and other various items.
“We did have structural collapse immediately as we came on scene,” Pope said. “This is an all metal construction building with lightweight trusses.”
At 6 a.m. Monday, emergency crews were still on scene working to extinguish the blaze. At least 16 firefighters and five ladders trucks from The Collins Fire Department were at the Hwy. 49 location.
“The fire is very stubborn,” Pope said.
Pope said Hwy. 49 was not affected by the fire, but he urged drivers to be safe while traveling in the area.
“Don’t be looking to the side or trying to take pictures and video and cause an accident,” he said. “We just ask you to please work with us as we work safely to finish getting this fire out without getting anybody hurt.”
The cause of the fire is under investigation.
“We’ll have assistance from the State Fire Marshal’s office and other agencies coming in to help us to investigate to determine a cause of the fire,” Pope said.
Shirley’s released the following statement on Facebook:
“As most of you know our building burned down last night. Our fire department worked so hard and were exhausted. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Our city has been there for us and there’s no other place I would rather be than here in Collins. Thank you for all of your messages, post, and being so thoughtful for your sweet comments. Please keep us and our employees in your prayers as we go through this transition. We do plan to rebuild and are looking at other options but until then we do have another location at 213 Clay Street Ellisville 39437.”