Missouri state office fire causes at least $2.5M in damage

November 5, 2021 GMT

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A fire at a Missouri state-leased office building caused more than $2.5 million in damage, a report released by the State Fire Marshal’s Office on Friday shows.

Investigators couldn’t determine the exact cause of the Monday night fire that destroyed the Department of Social Services’ Jefferson City office, according to the report. Damage to the building was extensive, which hindered the investigation.

Roughly 100 state employees worked in the building, including some information technology workers who support the social services agency.

No one was in the building by the time the fire was reported at close to 9 p.m. Monday, and no injuries were reported.

The Fire Marshal’s Office determined that the fire started on either the roof or in the attic. As the top of the building burned, debris fell and damaged the inside as well.

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Gov. Mike Parson’s office said the initial damage estimate doesn’t include the total cost of equipment that was destroyed. Work to salvage equipment is ongoing.

The employees who worked there have been relocated as the state tries to continue providing social services as usual.

“I could not be prouder of the dedicated public servants who have continued to serve Missourians in spite of these circumstances,” Parson said in a statement.