By Rita Reith
Firefighters worked for well over an hour to gain control of a large fire that broke out early Monday evening and quickly travelled through the attic space of a fully occupied apartment building in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Flanking the structure on two sides, crews used handlines and aerial operations to cut the fire off and were helped in large part by the block firewall, which remained intact despite the extreme heat and heavy flame.
The fire, which appeared to have travelled up the back side of the structure first, was heaviest in the attic space above a third floor unit and jumped over the firewall impinging upon the exposed roofline from the top. Crews were able to attack with master streams before the fire travelled the length of the building and took hold of the lesser damaged units.
It took another hour to extinguish hot spots and perform salvage and overhaul operations. Both primary and secondary searches proved all clear, and all occupants including some children and pets were accounted for and OK.
RITA L. REITH is a battalion chief with the Indianapolis (IN) Fire Department and serves as the agency’s public information officer.