Fall River crews investigating massive building fire

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FALL RIVER, Mass. (WPRI) — After more than 18 hours a fire destroyed a local hardware store, crews were still at the scene battling hot spots in the rubble.

There was an arctic scene on Pleasant Street Saturday morning in Fall River. Ice glazed over almost everything, including fire hydrants, streets and fallen debris.

“These firemen and the Fall River Police Department have been out here all night long,” says Fall River District Fire Chief David Levesque.

It was a long, frigid night for emergency crews, as the roof of Flint Hardware collapsed on itself.

“What happens is that when the roof collapsed, it formed a barrier over the fire underneath and crews have to keep wetting it down, eventually they’re gonna have to get in there to break that up and totally put the fire out,” adds District Chief Levesque.

“I come here every Saturday morning,” says Lisa Silva, who would go to Flint Hardware on a weekly basis. “I just figured even though I’m not shopping this morning, at the very least I’m here for supporting their family.”

She watched from the sidewalk as Public Works crews salted the streets, trying to get rid of the thick layer of ice that had formed.

Meanwhile, Wayne Weigold worked to clean up his own business, The E-Cig Barn, located right next door to Flint’s Hardware.

“We got a lot of water damage,” says Weigold. “We’re gonna try to clean the place up… hopefully by tomorrow we can get the smell out, we’ve gotta wash through the whole store.”

He adds he can’t believe his store is still standing and that the fire did not spread to other buildings. “I’m amazed it didn’t the fire department is amazing they did a great job,” he adds.

Residents in nearby apartment buildings were evacuated Friday. The District Fire Chief says those people should be allowed to go home at some point this weekend.

Right now, the cause of the fire is still under investigation.

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