July 15, 2012


 Fire damages Ohio VMA office

Courtesy of the Ohio VMA​
Posted on July 3, 2012 
Fire damaged the Ohio VMA office building near Columbus early June 1, forcing staff to set up a temporary office nearby.

Dan Kochensparger, a firefighter for the city of Upper Arlington, said passers-by on the road reported flames coming from the front of the building shortly before 3 a.m. The fire was under control about 15 minutes after firefighters arrived, he said.

Kochensparger said the fire likely started in the attic of the single-story, wood-frame building, and he said investigators were closely examining electrical components, including the Ohio Veterinary Medical Association sign. The sign was damaged during the fire, and the first arriving firefighters reported the sign was turned on when they arrived.

Jack Advent, executive director of the Ohio VMA, said about half the building was substantially damaged by the fire and uninhabitable. The other half was damaged by smoke. Advent said most of the OVMA’s records were stored electronically, both locally and on outside servers, and they were not damaged.

Advent said fire officials indicated to him lightning also could have caused the fire. National Weather Service information indicates a thunderstorm was in the area shortly after 1 a.m., and light rain was falling at the time of the fire.

Advent said the OVMA operated out of a hotel meeting room the first few days after the fire, and, while the offices are being repaired, staff plan to spend about three months working in a temporary office about two blocks north of the OVMA building. The building was constructed in 1958, and the association has owned it since 1993.

The temporary office address is 3300 Riverside Drive, Suite 125, Columbus, OH 43221.