Massive fire breaks out at old Aycock Distributing building in Texarkana

Fire department believes lightning is to blame
Published: Sep. 22, 2023 at 12:14 PM CDT|Updated: Sep. 22, 2023 at 6:40 PM CDT
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TEXARKANA, Texas (KSLA) - Emergency crews responded to the scene of a massive fire in Texarkana, Texas Friday morning.


Huge fire on Broad Street in Texarkana, Texas>>>

Posted by KSLA News 12 on Friday, September 22, 2023

It happened sometime Friday, Sept. 22 before noon at the old Aycock Distributing building on Broad Street. Fire department officials believe the fire was started by a lightning strike.

Two buildings were destroyed in the blaze.

“Everyone downtown said they heard a big lightning strike and and the smoke started about 20 minutes later,” said Lisa Thompson, who witnessed the fire.

It took about two hours for firefighters from Texas and Arkansas to put out the flames.

“We were not able to go into that building because of the integrity of that building and not endanger the lives of our firefighters,” said Texarkana Texas Fire Department Chief Chris Black. “The roof, you got a partial collapse. We can’t get it from above because it is actually coming from where the fire is burning. We are having trouble getting through the second floor into that fire.”

Aycock Distributing Co. began operating back in 1948. The company distributed sports equipment. John Delk owned the property.

“Yes, I hate to see it go. I told Mr. Aycock we will get him involved with what we do with the property from here on to honor the legacy for what he did here,” Delk said.

The building next to Aycock Distributing housed the Bowie County Public Defenders Office. However, officials say that office recently moved to another location.

Both buildings appeared to have been vacant at the time of the fire.

KSLA News 12 gives you the First Alert on breaking news and weather in the ArkLaTex.