A midday fire and the resulting smoke and water used to put it out damaged a number of rooms on the north end of the Best Western Precious Moments Hotel on Thursday.
Carthage Deputy Fire Chief Roger Williams said one room on the first floor of the north wing of the motel on Hazel Street was seriously damaged by the fire and water from the sprinkler system, while at least three other units on the first floor and an unknown number of rooms on the second floor were damaged by smoke and water.
The fire alarm came in about 12:30 p.m. on Thursday.
Williams said the rooms were unoccupied at the time of the fire.
He said the fire department called in a Missouri State Fire Marshall’s office investigator to help determine a cause of the fire.
The motel was mostly unoccupied and all the employees evacuated the building without injury.
He said it was a very different situation from March 30, 2011 when firefighters were called to the motel for a fire caused by two people operating a methamphetamine lab in one of the rooms.
David Clark and Alexis Wilson both pleaded guilty to arson in that case. Clark was sentenced to eight years in prison while Wilson received five years probation.
Earlier on Thursday, Carthage firefighters responded to what was initially reported as an acid spill on the lot of the Leggett and Platt Wire Mill on River Street.
Williams said the spill turned out to be very minor.
He said about five gallons of heavily diluted ferrous sulfide, which is produced as a byproduct of producing wire at the wire mill, was spilled from a truck.
Williams said a Leggett & Platt crew responded to the scene shortly after the call came in and had the spill cleaned up in a few minutes.