Wilmington firefighters on the A-Platoon were dispatched to the above location for a report of an apartment building on fire. The fire was reported by an EMT from Saint Francis EMS. The EMT is also an off-duty Wilmington firefighter.
First crews found light smoke coming from the eaves of a three-story apartment building that was vacant due to on-going renovations of the Clayton Court Apartments. Crews from Engine 6 and Tower 2 entered the building to investigate the fire.
As they were searching the third floor for the source of the smoke, the enclosed attic area exploded with fire. The flames shot down into the hallway of the third floor and momentarily cut off the crews from their exit.
Personnel were able to make it to the stairwell and the Lieutenant Turner of Engine 6 ordered an immediate evacuation of the building as the fire was overrunning the firefighters.
The fire attack was continued from outside of the building using ladder trucks and large caliber streams. The second alarm was struck at 6:35 p.m. The fire burned through the roof of the building which then collapsed into the third floor. It was declared under control at 7:53 p.m.
The roof sustained extensive fire damage. The rest of the building sustained smoke, water, and debris damage from the collapse of the roof into the structure.
The Wilmington Fire Marshal's Office is investigating the fire. One firefighter sustained a shoulder injury and was transported to Wilmington Hospital for treatment. There were no other injuries.
The power to the fire building was secured by Delmarva Power.
Off-duty Wilmington firefighters were called-back to work to staff reserve apparatus. Units from the county also assisted with covering city fire stations. Approximately 60 personnel responded to this fire. The Incident Commander was Deputy Chief Joseph Kalinowski.