Human error led to fire involving up to 50 vehicles at Marion auto repair shop

Marion, Indiana, Fire Department logo. (Image Provided)

MARION, Ind. (WISH) — Human error has been ruled as the cause of a large fire involving dozens of vehicles Tuesday afternoon at an auto repair shop northeast of downtown, a city fire official said Wednesday.

Marion Fire Department was sent about 5:15 p.m. Tuesday to a report of multiple vehicles on fire at Shrouts Towing, 1015 N. Horton Ave. That’s near the intersection with East Charles Street.

No one was hurt in the fire. The business has reopened Wednesday.

John Shrout, the owner, told News 8 by phone that the damaged vehicles were in a tow lot, essentially waiting to be turned into scrap. He estimated only 20 vehicles were damaged, and said an estimate on the total loss had not yet been calculated. The business never closed, Shrout said.

Brad Myers, the city’s fire marshal, said in a news release said the blaze involved 50 vehicles. Crews used 350 gallons of firefighting foam and 120,000 gallons of water, and had the fire under control about four hours after it started, the fire marshal said. Fire crews remained at the scene through about 9:45 p.m. Tuesday.

Myers said city officials determined public waterways were not at risk from environmental hazards as a result of the fire.

Four other departments assisted Marion firefighters with the large blaze.