When an old warehouse collapsed in Mt. Sterling Tuesday night, it left the family next door without a home, at least temporarily.
The Fire Marshall informed Gary Rothwell and his family Wednesday morning they could re-enter their home to gather some possessions but only briefly.
Gary tells 27 NEWSFIRST "We were told it would be safe for us to go in, but we shouldn't stay long and we shouldn't get near the wall closest to the warehouse.
The Rothwells spent Tuesday night at the Days Inn, courtesy of the warehouse owner, Joel Eades. Mr. Eades rented a room for them for 3 days in hopes that what's left of the warehouse can be safely removed from the site by then.
Gary Rothwell had called the city to warn them that the dilapidated building next to his house was in danger of falling over, and they sent out someone from code enforcement plus the building inspector.
Mr. Rothwell says, "They could see where the warehouse popped out 2 feet toward my home, but they said they had to give the owner 30 days to respond, and it didn't take 30 days."
That much was obvious to anybody driving down North Queen Street on Wednesday. The warehouse, which was built as a lunch box factory in the 1890's, had no more roof, and rubble was everywhere.
Still the Rothwell family was feeling blessed. Gary's wife Mary says, "The paramedics and the fire department tell us it's just a good thing the warehouse fell like it did cause if it had fallen in our direction, it could have killed us all, and we definitely wouldn't have no house."