Fire causes extensive damage to Jackson Hewitt


By Frank Lewis - [email protected]



Portsmouth firefighters battle a Sunday night blaze at Jackson Hewitt Tax Service, 709 Chillicothe St.


A Portsmouth firefighter escaped serious injury while battling a fire at the Jackson Hewitt Tax Service at 709 Chillicothe St. The first broke out around 9:45 Sunday night.

Scott Osborne was treated and released at Southern Ohio Medical Center for injuries suffered in a fall down a stairwell.

“They hit the fire on the second floor and knocked the fire down, and he went to the front of the building to open up the windows, to ventilate the smoke,” Portsmouth Fire Chief Bill Raison said. “When he was coming back from opening the windows, there was a couch in his way and he went to the right and there was a stairwell with no banister. He fell about eight feet, hit the steps, and rolled all the way down to the bottom of the steps and we sent him to the hospital as a precaution.”

Raison said Osborne suffered several bruises, but it wasn’t enough for him to go home. He returned to work.

“He’s a little stoved up,” Assistant Chief Bob Long said. “He’s a little sore but nothing was broke. They did X-rays and everything, and cleared him at the hospital and he actually came back to work.”

Raison talked about Osborne’s dedication to his job.

“He’s very dedicated,” Raison said. “We’re very very fortunate, very thankful. He could have been seriously injured by that fall.”

Bill Goble, the owner of the building, said he received a call about the fire at around 10 p.m. He said Long and an investigator from the State Fire Marshal’s office had been at the scene and told him the fire started in an extension card plugged into a wall outlet.

“There wasn’t much on that extension cord at the time,” Goble said. “We’re not open down here every day now because tax season is over.”

“it’s still under investigation, but it’s leaning toward electrical,” Long said. “Accidental for sure.”

Long said the building suffered moderate damage on the first and second floor.

“There wasn’t much on that extension cord at the time,” Goble said. “We’re not open down here every day now because tax season is over.”

Susan Camp, the manager of the business, said customers needing to reach Jackson Hewitt should call their Jackson, Ohio, office at 740-286-6934.

“We’ve been in business at this location for 20 years, formerly Dann Tax,” Camp said. “It has been a long established business.”

Raison talked about the dangers that plague firefighters.

“It just reiterates the hazards to this job,” Raison said. “It can happen at any turn. Normally people have banisters around their stairwells, but not always and they didn’t there.”

Portsmouth firefighters battle a Sunday night blaze at Jackson Hewitt Tax Service, 709 Chillicothe St.
http://portsmouth-dailytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/web1_Fire1-1.jpgPortsmouth firefighters battle a Sunday night blaze at Jackson Hewitt Tax Service, 709 Chillicothe St.

By Frank Lewis

[email protected]

Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.

Reach Frank Lewis at 740-353-3101, ext. 1928, or on Twitter @franklewis.

comments powered by Disqus