FRANKLIN, Ohio (WDTN) — Nexgen Composites in Franklin was badly damaged by fire early on Monday morning.

Firefighters responded to call of flames coming through the roof of the business in the 300 block of Conover road just after midnight.

When crews arrived, they found heavy fire and smoke coming from the building.

It took crews more than two hours to put out the fire.

The property owner told 2 NEWS that 12-13 people worked at Nexgen Composites and said they will eventually be transferred to another facility.

“Our attempts were to open up that roof to evacuate all of the smoke that was contained, basically throughout the entire structure,” Jonathan Westendorf from Franklin Fire/EMS said. “It’s an open warehouse, so the entire area was packed full of heavy, dark, black, dangerous smoke.”

“When we did out 360 of the building, there was high heat on all of the doors, all the way around this building,” Westendorf said. “There was a lot of fire that had been burning in there for quite some time, undetected.

The business was closed at the time of the fire. No one was hurt.

According to the property owner, the fire started in one corner of the building that had industrial ovens.

Fire officials say the business didn’t have fire alarms or sprinklers. The fire burned for some time before a passerby saw the flames and called 911.

“Had this building had a sprinkler system or a fire alarm system, we probably would’ve been able to respond much quicker and the damage would be a lot less,” said Jonathan Westendorf from Franklin Fire/EMS.

Fire officials say the business wasn’t required to have fire prevention measures on hand.

“Codes are written, there are certain building parameters that are required to be sprinklered and have fire prevention, and certain that are not,” Westendorf said. “Unfortunately, thiks is one that is not.”

We will always preach that we would rather see a building sprinklered,” Westendorf said. “It prevents this type of fire from occurring and getting this far ahead of us.”

“Certainly, we’re not aware because the building is unoccupied that a fire had broken out.”

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Crews from Joint Emergency Medical Service, Clearcreek Township Fire District, Carlisle, Franklin Township, Miami Valley Fire District and Middletown Fire assisted Franklin Fire/EMS at the scene.