A large fire destroyed a firing range in rural Tarrant County and injured at least one firefighter around noon Saturday.
The fire started in the firing range of On Target Firearms, at 13820 U.S. 377 in the Wheatland community southwest of Fort Worth, said Benbrook Fire Chief Tommy Davis.
“It was so fully involved, we couldn’t get all the way inside,” Davis said of what firefighters found upon arrival.
Crews were forced to douse the flames from the outside and call for a lot of support. The structure around the gun range collapsed, but firefighters were able to stop the flames from causing much damage to the attached showroom and offices.
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One Benbrook firefighter was injured after he fell about 10 feet from a ladder “and hit his neck on one of the ladder rungs,” Davis said. The firefighter was taken to a hospital, but Davis said that “he’s OK” and expected him to be released late Saturday afternoon.
The call came in about noon.
“The fire started at the rear of the target range,” Davis said. “People were in there target-shooting and they smelled smoke and they realized the back of the building was on fire.”
None of the occupants was injured, and the fire was extinguished in two to three hours, Davis said.
Tarrant County Deputy Fire Marshal Keith Ebel said that an investigation is underway and that the cause of the blaze should be determined Sunday.
Firefighters from about 15 departments responded to the fire, which caused major traffic delays on U.S. 377 between Benbrook and Cresson.
Staff writers Mark David Smith and Robert Cadwallader contributed to this report.