La Mesa Motel in Danger of Collapsing After Fire

Fire inside a La Mesa motel spready quickly early Tuesday, consuming the second floor and causing the roof to collapse. Many guests who were awakened by the fire alarm had time to only grab a few belongings before they could escape the flames, reports NBC San Diego.

Dozens of firefighters responded to the Rodeway Inn on Spring Street just before 5 a.m. Flames were shooting from the roof of the two-story motel located along Interstate 8.

The fire started high inside the building, made its way through the attic and moved very rapidly, according to Heartland Fire Chief Rick Sitta.

The building is in “imminent” danger of collapsing, investigators said. 

“We have some structural issues right now, that the building is in imminent collapse right now,” said Heartland Fire Fire Marshal Chris Jensen. “The building has no roof system holding up walls and so forth.”

The water firefighters used to put out the fire is now trapped in walls and ceilings, compromising the structure. The heavy rainfall across San Diego added to the problem, he said. 

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