Firefighter drives truck to blaze — at his own property

By J Swygart -

AMERICAN TOWNSHIP — Joe Hartman, in all his 30 years as a full-time firefighter in American Township, had never experienced anything like this.

Hartman on Monday evening drove the department’s fire engine to a blaze at his own residence. Chief Thomas Hadding said that upon arrival to the fire at Hartman’s woodworking and cabinet shop, 6880 W. State Road, other firefighters took over to allow their comrade to concentrate on his burning property.

Hadding said firefighters were dispatched shortly before 7:30 p.m. Monday and found “heavy smoke and fire on the front of the building” that housed Hartman’s woodworking shop.

A passerby spotted the blaze and reported it to the fire department.

Hadding said the structure was saved, with some damage to the building as well as water damage to some equipment inside. Investigators have not yet determined an actual dollar loss and were at the scene Tuesday morning attempting to determine the case of the fire, the chief said.

Assistance at the scene came from Delphos, Spencerville and Fort Jennings fire departments.

By J Swygart

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