AUSTINTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – It’s been eight months since The Training Range Inc. in Austintown had to shut down because of a fire. The owners say they’re about two weeks from opening back up.
“We still have to put a lot of the ceiling in here that was taken down by the fire,” Rick Baker, Vice President of the range, said.
The shooting range ignited in September. Sparks from a gun lit some powder on the floor and the whole room went up in flames.
The business had only been open for a year and a half.
Baker says getting back on their feet has been difficult.
“Add six months to what you think it’s going to take,” Baker said. “It was devastating. We had nine people put out of work.”
Baker said there was a light at the end of the tunnel.
They were able to replace everything with brand new state of the art equipment. That will make them one of the most advanced shooting ranges within a 60-70 mile radius.
“We’re working on improving airflow in here so that people are more comfortable,” Baker said. “We’ve changed the backstops into a rubberized compound.”
Baker said the new rubber backstop will make it quieter for the people who live around the range. There’s also extra safety equipment that will keep the range safe from flames.
“We’ll be able to have enhanced training now with this new set up in here,” Baker said. “It’ll lend itself to a lot of different things that we can do.”
Baker said the fire was a freak accident and hopes all businesses will take extra precaution.
“I have a much deeper understanding now when it occurs to somebody and I read about it in the paper,” he said. “Just what they’re going through — because it’s a mess.”
For more on The Training Range Inc., check out its Facebook page.