Firefighter injured after structure collapses during Virginia blaze

Around the South

ROANOKE, Va. (WFXR) — The Rescue Mission of Roanoke has confirmed that the southeast Roanoke residence that collapsed while crews were battling Saturday morning’s structure fire belongs to the rescue mission.

The Roanoke Rescue Mission says they also own several other properties along the 700 block of Bullitt Avenue SE.

Officials with the rescue mission say they have owned these residences for at least a month and intended to knock them down, but they have also been in communication with the community about what they want to be done with these abandoned homes.

The residence in southeast Roanoke completely collapsed following a Saturday morning fire, leaving one first responder injured and some equipment unsalvageable.

According to Roanoke Fire-EMS, crews were dispatched at 5:45 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 10, to the 700 block of Bullitt Avenue SE for a fire. When units arrived, they found a home heavily involved in smoke and flames.

All crews operated defensively, fighting the flames from the outside of the structure, but some firefighters reportedly accessed the neighboring house that was exposed to the fire in order to make sure there no extension into the second structure.

The department says one crew member noticed a partial collapse in the structure’s foundation and warned everybody surrounding the building of the potential hazard. However, shortly after that initial warning about the partial collapse, fire officials say the structure completely collapsed.

Roanoke Fire-EMS says one firefighter sustained minor injuries after being hit by debris that came off the structure during the collapse, but that firefighter was treated on-scene and released.

While there are no other reports of injuries, fire officials say some equipment was also caught in the collapse, rendering it unsalvageable.

“A scary situation, but one our personnel handled well and with a positive outcome,” Roanoke Fire-EMS wrote on Facebook on Saturday.

According to the department, the cause of the fire is under investigation. In addition, the 700 block of Bullitt Avenue SE will reportedly remain closed until further notice.

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