Pallet company to be back in business Monday after fire

Atlas Pallet Company was site of multiple fires in past 5 years


SAN ANTONIO – Atlas Pallet Company, a business on the near East side that was  the site of a massive fire early Saturday morning, is expected to be back in business by Monday.

The owner, Edgar Lozano, estimates his business lost 10,000 of its wooden pallets to the fire, which broke out around 12:30 a.m. Saturday.

"We have enough left here where we can get right back to work Monday," Lozano said.  "We want to tell our customers also that we're still in business."

 The loss, he said, was far less than what his company has experienced in the past.

 The pallet manufacturing company, located on Essex Street near Hoefgen Street, has been the site of several fires during the past five years.

Arson was found to be the cause of a huge fire on Labor Day 2008 which destroyed at least three buildings and 90 percent of the company's inventory.

Two years later, in July 2010, San Antonio firefighters had to douse another fire that damaged one building and piles of pallets.

Lozano said from the past troubles, he learned lessons, and that may be why the damage this time was, relatively, less severe.

"We worked with the fire department and we learned how to distance our pallet stacks to allow greater access to fire equipment and firefighters," he said, "and also to slow down the spread of the fire."

According to Chief Charles Hood, firefighters had some difficulties putting out the fire due to problems with the water supply.

"But we were able to get around the fire, surround it and drown it, basically," Hood said.

Arson investigators were called to the scene to look for the cause of the fire.

As of Saturday night, they had not released their findings.

Lozano said there was nothing in the area of the pallets that burned that could have ignited the fire.