December 5, 2022

Fire damages 2 downtown Columbus commercial buildings

Columbus firefighters tackled a fire early Sunday morning in two buildings that housed several businesses including the Columbus Area Chamber of Commerce, an advertising agency and financial and law offices. - Courtesy Columbus Fire Department

Columbus firefighters tackled a fire early Sunday morning in two buildings that housed several businesses including the Columbus Area Chamber of Commerce, an advertising agency and financial and law offices.

Courtesy Columbus Fire Department

A fire in downtown Columbus destroyed a commercial building containing offices and a photo studio and left three firefighters with minor injuries early Sunday.

A passerby discovered the fire and called 911 around midnight. When firefighters arrived within minutes, they found a well involved fire at the rear of the building, and as they began to fight it, part of the building collapsed and the fire jumped to a second building, they said.

When firefighters entered the second building to search for occupants, they found a cat that then ran from the structure, they said.

A large portion of the third-story facade of the second building collapsed, narrowly missing firefighters and raining debris on fire trucks.

The two buildings housed several businesses including the Columbus Area Chamber of Commerce, an advertising agency and financial and law offices.

It took approximately four hours to gain control of the blaze, firefighters said.

Flames also damaged electrical lines, leaving part of the downtown area without power for a while.

The cause of the fire was under investigation. The amount of damages was not immediately clear.

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