Firefighters brave the cold to battle fire

BROOKSTON, INDIANA - Firefighters are recovering from frostbite after responding to that Brookston fire investigators now believe was electrical.

Brookston Fire Chief Willis Johnson says the building lost power while 12 semi-trucks were plugged into an electrical circuit on the south end of the building.

He says he believes a power surge sparked the fire.

Johnson says those trucks were moved while firefighters battled the fire..

But Willis says the building is a total loss and that the weather prevented them from saving any of it.

Several firefighters experienced the effects of frostbite on their fingers and fingertips.

Chief Willis says Monday's fire was one of the toughest to fight.

Willis says staying warm became a challenge he and his team.

"My hands were getting cold, so I put them down in front of a knipco heater we had there heating the bottom of the truck to get the pumps back to running right," said Willis Johnson, the Brookston Fire Chief. "I stuck my hand down in front of this knipco heater and caught my glove on fire. I was going on working and the guys hollered at me and said, 'you're glove's on fire.' I didn't even feel it."

Willis says he has frostbite on two of his fingers, but will not go to the hospital unless it gets worse.