ARARAT Country Fire Authority operations manager Chris Eagle praised emergency crews after fire burnt a dry cleaning store on Thursday night.
Mr Eagle said many of Ararat's CFA volunteers were already fully suited and in a fire truck at 7.15pm when they were called to the fire in Vincent Street.
"They were just about to start training," he said.
But the fire was already raging when fire-fighters arrived.
"Before the crews could even open the door, they could feel the heat from the front," he said.
Three trucks travelled from Ballarat to help CFA units from Stawell and Ararat.
"SES units came from Stawell and Ararat as well, plus several police cars," Mr Eagle said.
It took two hours to control the fire.
Mr Eagle said little was left of the dry cleaning store.But a neighbouring printing store, which shared a wall with the dry cleaning store, was barely damaged. Mr Eagle said roads reopened about 11pm.
CFA and Victoria Police fire investigators returned on Friday morning to investigate the cause of the fire.
"There was nothing to indicate a suspicious fire," Mr Eagle said.
In an unrelated incident, Horsham CFA members attended a fire at a dry cleaning business in Wilson Street, Horsham, at 11.36pm on Thursday.
Operations officer Trevor Ebbels said one unit attended the small fire, which was declared safe within 30 minutes of the fire-fighters' arrival.
Mr Ebbels said the fire was not suspicious.