7-Alarmer Hits Ky. Strip Mall

BRANDENBURG, Ky. --

Multiple fire crews said they were battling a seven-alarm fire at a strip mall in Brandenburg.

Firefighters said they were finally able to contain the blaze about 2:30 a.m. Sunday, eight hours after it started.

Rescue workers said fire died down for a bit but erupted again after 9 p.m.

"It had flames 20 feet in the air 5 hours after it started," witness Jamie Denner said.

Fire crews said they were first called to the mall at about 6:32 p.m. Saturday. The strip mall is located at 2320 Bypass Rd.

"It's like (the fire) just took off and came all the way down through the ceiling and got all the businesses," resident Debbie Grammer said.

Emergency crews said the strip mall and the businesses it housed were a total loss. The mall had a Radio Shack, Save-a-Lot dollar store, Clothes Closet, a smoke shop and a fitness center.

"It's just really sad. I don't remember a time when this building wasn't here. It's a tragedy for the community because for so many people in our county, this is the only place they can afford to shop," Grammer said.

Officials said there were about 85 people who worked at the strip mall.

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