Warehouse fire destroys nearly 100 families' household goods
By JOHN VANDIVER | STARS AND STRIPES Published: November 2, 2010
STUTTGART, Germany — Household goods belonging to nearly 100 families from the U.S. military community were destroyed Saturday night in a fire at a warehouse that serves as the main storage site for U.S. personal property shipments in the Stuttgart region.
The fire, which remains under investigation, destroyed 106 shipments for 97 families, according to the U.S. Army Garrison at Stuttgart.
“We’re going to do everything we can do to help the families recuperate what they lost,” Col. Carl D. Bird, the garrison commander, said in a release. “But we fully understand folks will have lost sentimental and irreplaceable items.”
Garrison officials will be offering a range of services for the families to help guide them through the process of filing claims. Temporary furnishing and lodging extensions also will be offered, according to the garrison.
On Wednesday, an informational briefing will be held between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m at the Panzer Chapel.
Also, the military will open a family assistance center Wednesday at the Army Community Service building on Panzer. On hand will be representatives from housing, inbound personnel property, human resources, finance, Army Emergency Relief, religious support and civilian personnel offices.
The Stuttgart garrison has set up a hot line — DSN 431-2334, or commercial 07031-15-2334 — that will be manned 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily
The warehouse, owned by Andreas Christ Spedition and Möbeltransport GmbH — a U.S.-contracted moving company — is about 12 miles north of Stuttgart in the town of Schwieberdingen.
According to German media reports, 350 firefighters responded to the blaze, which ravaged the 50,000 square-foot facility.
The fire damaged goods owned by military and civilian families and included property belonging to both inbound and outbound personnel.
“This is not an easy situation to deal with, however, military families are resilient, and we have a great community to support them,” Bird said.
Household goods belonging to nearly 100 families from the U.S. military community were destroyed Saturday night in a fire at a warehouse that serves as the main storage site for U.S. personal property shipments in the Stuttgart region.
Benjamin Beytekin/Special to Stars and Stripes