7.2.15: Crews spent the night fighting fire at Pitsch
GRAND RAPIDS, MI – (Mlive)– late-night fire at Pitsch Wrecking Co. on Wednesday resulted in the loss of nearly $1 million in equipment at the company’s maintenance facility, said Lewis Pitsch, vice president of the West Side salvage and wrecking company.
But the family-owned company was back in business by 9 a.m. Thursday, said Pitsch, who credited Grand Rapids firefighters with saving the company’s salvage store and other equipment parked near the shop at 675 Richmond Ave. NW.
“It’s business as usual. We just got the power on,” said Pitsch, on Thursday, July 2. He said the company will move its maintenance shop over the Fourth of July holiday weekend into a neighboring building it recently acquired.
“This doesn’t affect our day-to-day operations, it just affects the maintenance of our equipment,” said Pitsch, whose company specializes in demolition and salvage operations.
None of the company’s 120 employees were inside the building when the fire was reported at 9:33 p.m. on July 1, Pitsch said. He said they have not determined the cause of the fire, which was confined to the maintenance facility.
“The fire department did a great job. They responded within three minutes,” Pitsch said. “They came in and foamed all of our equipment that’s along the alley next to the building and they foamed the (salvage) building.”
The fire generated a dark, billowing cloud of smoke over the city’s near Northwest Side because the building housed more than 1,000 gallons of lubricants and about 70 tires, Pitsch said.
Inside the seven-bay maintenance facility, the company lost two pickup trucks, a semi-tractor, two semi-trailers, four “Bobcat” earthmovers, two hi-lo lift trucks, and a mobile air compressor, he said.