(Wyo)-Fire Destroys Upton Motel
photo - courtesy KOTA
UPTON, Wyo. - The Wyoming State Fire Marshal is investigating the cause of a fire yesterday that destroyed the Weston Inn Motel in Upton, but firefighters at the scene say there was an explosion that may have started in the laundry room.
Tiffony Riehemann of the Upton Volunteer Fire Department says the motel was fully involved in flames when the department's command unit arrived, leaving the 3 structure engines and 35 first-responders working to keep the fire from spreading. Crews spent about 4 hours at the scene.
Because this is the slow season for tourism in northeastern Wyoming, the only person in the motel at the time was the manager, Caleb Johnson, whose family had helped run it for years. He lived there but got out safely along with his cat.
Johnson's mother Sandy told KOTA-TV that her son was asleep and isn't exactly sure what woke him up...possibly the explosion or possibly just needing to use the bathroom. She also said that since the fire started in the middle of the building, there could have been loss of life had there been guests.
Sandy Johnson said her son lost everything he owned in the fire including 3 vehicles, one passed down from his father...who died just 4 months ago. She says Caleb will live with her as a hooks for a new job as they "try to pick up the pieces."
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