MAZEPPA — A Tuesday morning fire heavily damaged a Mazeppa-area structure.

Ralph Zimmerman, the deputy chief for the Mifflinburg Hose Company, said there were no injuries the 9:50 a.m. fire. He noted the Lucas Koch property, a garage along Swartz Road near Ford Lane, was insured.

“(Koch) was actually renting that out to a Josh Aikey,” Zimmerman said. “They were working on a vehicle and either a welder or a torch got too close to the gas tank.”

It was a miracle, Zimmerman said, that Aikey and another person escaped without injury after the fuel tank blew up. He noted that state fire marshals were not called because the cause of the fire was determined.

The multiple-alarm fire attracted personnel from Mifflinburg, Lewisburg, Milton, White Deer, Union Township and New Berlin. Water was portaged about a mile from a creek which borders Kelly Township.

Staff writer Matt Farrand can be reached at 570-742-9671 and via email at

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