invisible hit counter
Fire's cause still unknown
ST. MARYS -- Investigators are trying to determine the cause of a fire Saturday that destroyed one of the few remaining structures at the Durango-Georgia paper mill site in St. Marys.

City fire chief Robbie Horton said the 175- by 80-foot brick building and its contents were destroyed in the blaze, which was reported to his department about 5:50 p.m. Only the four red brick walls of the structure remain standing.

Horton said the fire, which was reported by the salvage company working at the 720-acre site, was fully involved by the time engines arrived at the scene.

The structure, originally built as a heavy equipment maintenance building, was being used by the salvage company to store equipment such as filters and construction equipment, he said.

Getting to the building, 300 to 400 feet off Ga. 40, was a challenge because of the heavy undergrowth, piles of debris and poor condition of the perimeter access road at the mill site, Horton said.

"The location was an issue," he said. "The roads were in bad shape. We did have some access issues because of the way the wind was blowing."

Six fire trucks were called to the scene, he said. Kingsland Fire Department and Camden County Fire Rescue engines assisted by putting out small spot fires caused by embers the wind blew onto tall grass and shrubs that have grown on the site since the mill closed in 2002.

No injuries were reported.

Horton said the cause of the fire is still under investigation.

"We have nothing but speculation at this time," he said.

SBlt Reporter Gordon Jackson writes about Camden County and other local topics. Contact him at, on Facebook or at 464-7655.

View Full Site