LOGAN SQUARE — The roof of a Logan Square metal finishing factory collapsed in a fire Monday night, causing no injuries but leaving the factory’s workers shaken.
Randy Smith, who owns the metal finishing factory at 3905 W. Armitage Ave. called Bright Metals, said one of his workers went by the factory to turn the building’s water off around 9 p.m. Monday when he discovered the roof had collapsed.
No one was inside the factory when it happened. Bright Metals has 7 a.m.-2 p.m. business hours, according to Smith.
Smith said authorities secured the scene within a couple of hours and made sure the chemicals in the factory were contained. The Chicago Fire Department on Twitter said the scene was secured by 10 p.m.
But Smith said he can’t help but wonder what would’ve happened if the incident had happened during business hours.
“I could’ve been underneath that. My workers could’ve been under there,” he said. “We’re lucky.”
Smith, who has owned the company for about a decade, said authorities had yet to determine the cause of the fire as of Tuesday evening. He said there were no signs the building, which he estimates was built sometime in the 1950s, was susceptible to collapse.
The age of the building was not listed in Cook County property records. The building was last inspected in 2014, according to city records. The building failed that 2014 inspection for failure to maintain exterior walls, among other violations.
About 10 people work under Smith at Bright Metals. Smith said he and his employees are all out of work until the building is repaired and the business is up and running again.
“If insurance says we’re not covered then I don’t know what to do. I’m not there yet,” Smith said.
“I’m just glad nobody got hurt.”
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