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UPDATE: Commercial Structure Fire - 2nd Alarm - 200 block of Avenue I South

For immediate release: September 14, 2020 - 4:43pm
20-11811

The Saskatoon Fire Department has concluded at the scene of a significant two-alarm structure fire that occurred in the 200 block of Avenue I South on the evening of September 13, 2020 and continued into the early hours of September 14, 2020.

Firefighters successfully protected surrounding exposures, containing the fire to the structure of origin. The fire was officially declared under control at around 11:22 p.m. on September 13th with firefighters extinguishing flare-ups and monitoring for hot spots until about 5:02 a.m. on September 14th. As a result of highly trained personnel, effective fire attack strategies, and diligent accountability measures, there were no injuries reported.

Fire investigators have identified this fire to be incendiary. At the time of release, damage has been estimated at approximately $750,000.

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At approximately 6:27 p.m. on September 13, 2020, a fire engine responding to a residential fire signal on Avenue K South observed a significant amount of black smoke in the area; further exploration located a commercial structure on fire in the 200 block of Avenue I South. Seven fire engines, one rescue unit, two aerial ladder trucks, three fire investigation units, one public affairs official, one battalion chief, and one assistant chief have been committed to this incident at the time of release.

Firefighters first began softening the fire from the exterior with the intention of continuing extinguishment from the interior of the structure; upon escalation of the fire, the commanding battalion chief directed all fire crews to exit the structure and conduct defensive aerial and ground-level fire attack strategies. The structural integrity has been severely compromised resulting in a partial collapse. Arcing power lines, nearby electrical boxes, and on-site propane tanks have presented safety hazards on scene; the assistant chief serving as safety officer has closely monitored fire ground activities. Multiple utilities have been affected as a result of this fire; crews from the City of Saskatoon have attended the scene and are assisting the Saskatoon Fire Department as required. The Saskatoon Police Service has restricted traffic flow through the area and will issue a release upon these restrictions being lifted.

Firefighters remain on scene extinguishing hot spots and performing overhaul duties. Fire and police investigators will be conducting a thorough scene examination to identify a cause, origin, and damage estimate, as well as collect necessary evidence relative to this incident.

An update will be provided upon new information becoming known.