Fire in Augusta hotel damages at least 20 rooms

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A fire at an Augusta hotel damages several rooms.

It happened this morning at the Days Inn at the intersection of Gordon Highway and Molly Pond Road.

The smoke was visible from half a mile away off of Gordon Highway. Firefighters say at least 20 rooms were damaged.

The smoke coming from the Days Inn was so thick it erased the traffic on Gordon Highway sitting right next to it.

Firefighters walking into it seemed to vanish into thin air.

Bad timing for the hotel's owners during peak business time.

Fortunately, the call went out around 11:00 a.m., the same time as checkout.

"When we arrived we believe the owner had all the occupants out," says Carl Scott, Deputy Chief of Operations for the Richmond County Fire Department.

Firefighters say it took them about 30 minutes to contain the fire because of some unexpected surprises.

"Construction features of this hotel is difficult for firefighters to get within the walls of the floor," Chief Scott says.

This is the first Masters for Gary Courtey.

He had just finished loading up his luggage when he realized he wasn't going anywhere for a while.

"I had four hours to kill before all the guys came in for the Masters. I called them and told them I'm sitting here watching this place burn down," Courtey says.

Leaving some Masters patrons tonight trying to make the best of a bad bargain.

Despite the heavy smoke, there were no reported injuries from any of the hotel's guests.

However, some firefighters were treated for minor smoke inhalation.

The cause of the fire is still being investigated.