MINOT, N.D. (KFYR) Update: The occupants of a historic apartment complex in downtown Minot destroyed by an overnight fire are all confirmed safe, according to Minot Fire Chief Kelli Kronschnabel.
Six firefighters were treated for minor injuries.
A peaceful Tuesday night soon turned into a race against time Wednesday, as fire crews descended on the Halls Apartments, engulfed in flames.
The fire tore through the top level of the structure, forcing firefighters to dump thousands of gallons of water on the structure.
Efforts to put out the fire at the Halls Apartments in Minot has been a true team effort. We're told as many as 30 firefighters have been on scene throughout the night battling the flames.
“It's been a long night for them already. It's going to be a long day as well. This isn't something that just stops automatically. We're going to have guys on scene for probably another 24 hours or so. They'll be watching even after the flames go out. We'll still, we'll have a pretty heavy presence down here for a while,” said Derek Hackett, Minot public information officer.
The American Red Cross coming to the aid of those who lost their homes.
“We're getting them motels if they need a place to stay, and some assistance for immediate essentials tonight,” said Vickie Phippins.
As night turned to day, the true devastation of the fire was revealed, the roof gone, power lines and porches frozen under water.
And, the investigation frozen as well, as a structural engineer will have to inspect the apartment before investigators can even get inside.
Some mourned the loss of the structure itself on social media, built in 1916.
A devastating blaze, taking away the homes of many, and with it a piece of Minot history.
The Minot Fire Department says the fire was under control by 8 a.m., though some hot spots remained as of late Wednesday afternoon. The department says firefighters and law enforcement will remain on scene throughout the night.
An insurance company investigator is also on scene.
Chief Kronschnabel thanks the local agencies and companies that assisted in the response.
Update: 7:36 Halls Apartments, operated by IMM, forced all residents to evacuate after it caught fire early Wednesday morning.
The apartment complex had 28 units and the city believes 26 of them were occupied, according to Derek Hackett, the public information officer for the City of Minot.
It’s still unclear at this time if everyone managed to get out of the building, whether there were any injuries, and what caused the fire.
Hackett said the roof to the apartment is gone. The structure will be a total loss. Crews are expected to be on scene throughout Wednesday.
The Red Cross has been on scene periodically throughout the morning providing supplies for displaced tenants, and are working on setting them up in hotels.
Minot Public School Superintendent Dr. Mark Vollmer said classes at Minot Central Campus, which lies kitty-corner to the apartment, will go on as scheduled.
However, parents are advised to use caution when dropping off students and to follow directions provided by Minot Police who have secured the area around the fire.
Original Fire crews are battling a fire at an apartment in downtown Minot this Wednesday morning. The fire is just north and west of Trinity Hospital and the Ward County Courthouse and Jail.
Around 1 a.m., flames were visible in the upper part of the structure. There's no word yet on any injuries, or what caused the fire.