None one was hurt in a downtown fire Friday that destroyed a cold storage building, damaged an attached home and sent a column of smoke over Fairbanks that could be seen for miles.
The cause of the fire at 751 Ninth Ave. near Smythe Street is under investigation. Three people and four dogs are displaced, according to a news release from the city of Fairbanks. The blaze drew more than 20 firefighters from the Fairbanks, University and Fort Wainwright fire departments.
Flames shot out from just below the eaves of the building as firefighters attacked the blaze from both Ninth and 10th avenues. On Ninth Avenue, fire crews staged a truck with a cherrypicker arm, dousing flames from above.
The cold storage building was previously damaged after a partial roof collapsed, Acting Fairbanks Fire Chief Scott Raygor said. He estimated the building was more than 60 years old. Neighbors said it had previously housed a construction business.
“It’s so unsafe, we haven’t put anyone in the building,” Raygor said.
A neighbor called 911 to alert first responders, but Raygor said crews saw the smoke column from the fire department just a few blocks away. They arrived minutes later.
A resident of the dwelling was not home and arrived at the scene as firefighters doused the attached building. He reunited with his dog, Yukon, and provided information about the building to the fire marshal. The man declined to be interviewed.
Raygor said a wall made of brick or block separates the attached building from the home.
Neighbors milled about monitoring the firefighting effort until the flames were contained. One woman with a house nearby said she canceled a hair appointment.
Teal Soden, spokeswoman for the city of Fairbanks, sent a text about 5 p.m. Friday saying the fire is extinguished.