Yeah, we're over this week too.
It took about a dozen fire departments fighting a 5-alarm blaze in the Staunton, Illinois night to emerge from their battle with bad news. That would be the fact that there there were many casualties, with around 150 vintage cars housed at Country Classic Cars off the East Frontage Road burning to a crisp and sending the hopes and dreams of classic car lovers around the US as well as the millions of dollars owner Russ Noel had invested into the collection literally up in smoke.
Fortunately, the St. Louis Dispatch reports that no humans were hurt in the fire, but it did consume some of the most desirable classic cars sold to Americans during the '20s and beyond. There's no apparent clue as to what set the blaze off, but given the fact that the fire seemed to be more intense towards the center of the building, fire officials seem to think it started from inside the warehouse rather than set from the outside. Given the volatility of electrical systems on older cars, it wouldn't be surprising to learn that faulty wiring in one of the vehicles is responsible for the blaze, but that much remains unclear. Thankfully it doesn't seem like this fire will be the end of Country Classic Cars.
The dealership, which sells cars off of the iconic Route 66 for nostalgic travelers hoping for a classic car on which to traverse one of America's more famous roads, has an inventory of over 600 cars.
The 150 or so cars it lost isn't exactly a drop in the bucket, but it seems that with a proper fire insurance check, some time off to mourn the lost cars leading to a subsequent recharging of Noel's batteries, the dealership could be up, running, and looking like this in no time.