A massive fire tore through a three-story building that was under renovation in New Bedford, Massachusetts, overnight, causing the structure to collapse, fire officials said.
According to the New Bedford Fire Department, a passerby flagged down a police officer shortly after 4 a.m. Saturday to alert officials to a fire on South Second Street.
Responding crews found heavy fire in the main wood frame structure that threatened to spread to several nearby buildings. Fire officials said a one-story commercial building just a few feet away and an unoccupied three-story wood frame building on another side both suffered minimal exposure damage.
Shortly after a collapse zone was set up, the main building suffered a complete collapse, fire officials said. It was not clear how long the building had been under renovation or if it was close to being completed.
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One firefighter was taken to St. Luke’s Hospital for evaluation but is expected to be released Saturday, the fire department said. NBC affiliate WJAR reports he was suffering from dehydration and heat exhaustion.
An engine company remained on scene to standby while a demolition contractor removed the remaining collapsed portions of the building and secured the area.
The cause of the fire is being investigated and remains under investigation at this time.