Tuesday blaze damages Tables of Stone shop in Merrimack

Combustible items that fire officials said were stored too close to a wood stove sparked a fire that damaged a building housing a Daniel Webster Highway business Tuesday afternoon.

Fire Marshal John Manuele said firefighters arrived at Tables of Stone, 759 Daniel Webster Highway, around 2 p.m. to find smoke coming from the rear of the 3,600 square foot building that the business, a granite countertop manufacturer, uses as a workshop and showroom.

Manuele said the owner, Tim Simkin, told firefighters everyone was out of the building. Crews forced entry at the rear of the building to access the blaze, which broke out toward the back of the shop.

The fire was declared under control at 2:15 p.m., Manuele said, after which “an extensive overhaul” was begun. He said the building sustained moderate fire damage, mostly in the rear and portions of the roof, and some contents also burned.

There was heavy smoke damage throughout the building as well, Manuele said. Crews cleared the scene around 3:30 p.m. The cost of the damage is still being calculated, he added.

A Manchester fire engine answered a medical call with a Merrimack ambulance while Merrimack crews were tied up at the fire, he said.

– DEAN SHALHOUP