2 people sent to hospital, buildings suffer $2M damage after east end fire
CBC News

Two people were rescued and sent to hospital after a structure fire in the city's east end Tuesday that firefighters say spread to multiple buildings.

Dave Cunliffe, Hamilton's fire chief, said first reports of the blaze at 221 Kenilworth Ave. N. between Britannia Avenue and Hope Avenue came in at 3:19 p.m on Tuesday.

The first crews to arrive saw heavy smoke from a two-storey building with residential units on top of a store, he said.

"Upon entry, crews experienced black-out conditions and high heat while performing an aggressive search and rescue and firefighting operation," Cunliffe said in a statement late Tuesday.

The fire was upgraded to a level three fire, and the department began drawing from resources across the city.

"As conditions were rapidly deteriorating and the fire was spreading to adjoining buildings, the interior crews were pulled out and exterior firefighting operations were initiated," Cunliffe said.

"During the search and rescue operations, one person was rescued from a second-storey window and a second person was assisted out at the rear of the building."

He said both people received first aid and went to hospital, but there were no reports of injuries as of 6:28 p.m. Tuesday.

At the time of the statement, the fire was still burning in at 221 Kenilworth and the adjoining building to the south. The fire also affected two other adjoining buildings to the north, Cunliffe said.

He described how firefighters were using three aerial devices and multiple high volume hoses in the firefight.

"The buildings have sustained significant damage including structural collapse," Cunliffe said.

In an email on Wednesday morning, he said the damage is at least $2 million and added the Ontario Fire Marshal will be attending the scene.


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