Fire forces Amedia Plaza evacuation
A fire accidentally started by two construction workers forced tenants at Amedia Plaza in downtown Youngstown to evacuate the building Thursday afternoon, according to Youngstown Fire Department officials.
YFD Investigator Alvin Ware said two workers doing construction on the sixth floor of the apartment complex at 131 W. Boardman St. were using a grinder when sparks ignited a fire. The workers put out the flames with a fire extinguisher, only to hear an alarm go off while they were on their lunch break after the fire re-ignited, according to Ware.
The fire started around 12:30 Thursday afternoon, according to YFD Chief John O'Neill.
Everyone living at the complex evacuated the building as a precaution. The fire did not injure anyone, O'Neill said.
Fire officials began letting tenants back into the apartment around 1:10 p.m.
"A lot of times . . . the fire kind of gets away from them," O'Neill said. "One of the best things you can do is not delay. If you do have a fire and you're doing construction, even if it's small, at least put the phone call in. If you do want to try to extinguish, that's fine, but get us started, because they get away from you pretty quick."
The apartment complex is home to people eligible for Section 8, or low-income, housing.
Work on brickwork causes fire at downtown Youngstown high-rise
Fire investigators say construction crews renovating the brickwork at a downtown building touched off a small fire Thursday.
Firefighters were called to the Youngstown Metropolitan Housing Authority high-rise Amedia Plaza at West Boardman and Hazel streets about 12:10 p.m. for a report of smoke in the building. When they arrived, they found smoke in a sixth floor apartment.
Fire Investigator Capt. Alvin Ware said the construction workers were using sanders and grinders on the bricks around the building, tools that can create a spark. He said they caught a spark on the wood around the window of one of the apartments, causing a small fire that spread from the outside through the wall to the apartment.
No one was injured, but three of the department's ladder trucks were among the vehicles on the scene, snarling traffic around city hall in the early afternoon hours.
The building has 12 floors plus a 13th floor for maintenance but all residents were evacuated, Ware said.
There was a heavy smell of smoke around the building but no flames were ever visible. Firefighters ripped the woodwork off the window so they could pour water directly on the hot spot.
A damage estimate was not available Thursday.
Resident Peg Alford lives on the 11th floor and said she heard on the public-address system that smoke was in the building and residents needed to evacuate. She said that was difficult because she needs a walker.
On the ninth floor, however, she was helped by firefighters. She said she was very thankful for their help.
"I just thank God for the quick response," Alford said.
Chief John O'Neill said his crews are prepared to fight fires in high-rise buildings and regularly train in vacant buildings. They have plans for operations in several big downtown buildings.
Fire breaks out at downtown YMHA high rise
Youngstown firefighters have been dispatched to what is being called a working fire at Amedia Plaza on West Boardman Street.
The alarm went out shortly after 12:30 p.m. today, after a construction worker using power equipment set fire to woodwork near an exterior window.
The building was evacuated.
There are no reports of injuries.
Amedia Plaza is operated by the Youngstown Metropolitan Housing Authority, and houses low and moderate income residents.
Fire at the Amedia Plaza apartments downtown
City fire crews are on the scene of a fire at the Amedia Plaza apartments at Boardman and Hazel streets downtown.
Residents and staff are outside. Crews in a ladder truck are trying to break apart a window to fight the flames.
There is a heavy smell of smoke but no visible flames
Fire consumes vacant house in Youngstown
For the second time in two days a vacant house in Youngstown was left to burn to the ground.
Crews were called about 4 a.m. to a house on Chalmers Avenue near Market Street.
Flames were shooting from the roof of the house when crews arrived, and the structure was left to burn down.
No one was hurt.
Crews were called about 1 a.m.Tuesday to a house in the 100 block of Cohasset Drive near Hillman Street. When they arrived, the house was already engulfed in flames. Crews conducted a controlled burn of the house.
Both fires are considered suspicious.