ATF agents investigating Holly Hill fire that destroyed 3 businesses

HOLLY HILL, SC (WCSC) - Agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives have called in the agencies National Response Team to investigate Monday morning's fire that destroyed three Holly Hill businesses.

The ATF's Charlotte Division called in the team to begin a joint investigation of the fire that destroyed the Super 10 department store and two neighboring businesses.

The team, which includes certified fire investigators, forensic mapping specialists, canine teams, electrical engineers, forensic chemists and special agents will arrive in Holly Hill Wednesday to support the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, Holly Hill Police Department, Holly Hill Fire Department, Orangeburg County Fire District and the Orangeburg County Office of Emergency Services in this investigation.

The fire was reported at approximately 12:30 a.m. Monday morning. When firefighters arrived on the scene, they saw flames shooting out of Super 10, Joy's Touch of Class and Goldstein's.

Investigators say they are not ruling out arson as a possible cause.

None of the buildings was inhabited at the time of the fire. No serious injuries were reported but the total loss of the multiple buildings is estimated at more than $1 million dollars.

"Investigating a fire of this magnitude requires a number of specialized resources to help determine the origin and cause," Charlotte Field Division Special Agent in Charge Wayne L. Dixie, Jr. said. "ATF will work in partnership with state and local fire and law enforcement agencies to assist the town of Holly Hill in any way we can."

The Super 10 store's brick front remained intact. But shortly after noon Monday, firefighters pushed onlookers back because of concerns the building could collapse. Barricades have since been put up so no one can get close.

Jan Wyles, who owns the Super 10 building, said it was 100 years old and served as a boarding house in the 1920s.

Investigators spent much of Monday searching for evidence.

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