Denison issues state of disaster after massive downtown fire

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DENISON, Tex. (KXII) - The City of Denison has issued a local state of disaster is response to the massive fire that destroyed two buildings and badly damaged two others in Downtown Denison.

Nayelly Salinas was working at the back of Desk and Easel, a private office and meeting space, Wednesday morning. She said an employee from the Luxor Nails and Spa began frantically banging on the back door.

"One of the nail salon employees came to our backdoor to bang on the backdoor, and there was smoke in the alley, so I grabbed a phone and a fire extinguisher and called 911," said Salinas.

She said by the time she got off the phone with 911 flames were coming out of the nail salon.

An hour later, she watched the building crumble.

Salinas said she saw an employee at the nail salon with minor burns on their arm but did not need medical attention.

"And all of the employees were also there, the business owners of the nail salon and the employees watching it unfold as well. They were just devastated and in shock," said Salinas.

Denison Fire Chief Gregg Loyd said 18 of their fire fighters were on scene, as well as nine other fire departments that came to help.

Firefighters battled hot spots on the roof of the Desk and Easel well into the night.

Loyd also said their crews can not go inside any of the buildings yet because the structure still isn't safe.

"Got a physical engineer coming out to take a look at it. Once the physical engineer gives us the green light on this is safe and this is safe, we'll get in for a closer look," said Loyd.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation, but Loyd said air quality is not an issue at this time.