Fire destroys townhomes in Phoenixville

Fire rages through a townhouse community construction site in Phoenixville on Wednesday.
Fire rages through a townhouse community construction site in Phoenixville on Wednesday. Submitted Photo
What’s left of the homes a fire burned through at a townhouse community in Phoenixville Wednesday.
What’s left of the homes a fire burned through at a townhouse community in Phoenixville Wednesday. Submitted photo

PHOENIXVILLE >> A multi-alarm fire destroyed townhomes under construction at the Steeltown Village in the 700 block of Wheatland Street.

The fire was called in at 11:07 a.m. Wednesday and was quickly upgraded to a three-alarm fire, according to the State Police Fire Marshal.

Several construction workers noticed smoke coming from the building where they had been working and quickly let others know to evacuate, according to reports at the scene. Workers said the building went up in flames in a matter of seconds.

At least two of the newly constructed buildings were destroyed by the flames. Other nearby buildings appeared to have sustained damage to their exteriors, leaving some of the siding melted.

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Authorities said the near 90-degree temperatures late Wednesday morning made the effort to fight the fire difficult, sending one firefighter to the hospital for heat exhaustion as crews worked to douse the blaze.

No other injuries were reported. About six other ambulances were on standby.

Firefighters also cited water supplies as an issue during the blaze. Authorities said the water supply for the development had been shut off for construction, which necessitated laying hoses by hand back to the next street and between a few residences.

The State Police Fire Marshal and the Chester County Fire Marshal were on the scene Wednesday afternoon surveying the damage as construction equipment was used to tear down destroyed sections of the homes. Authorities are continuing to investigate and do not yet have a cause.

Dozens of fire companies and EMS responded to the scene just off Mason Street Wednesday, many of which were still actively working as of 1 p.m. Fire police had Nutt Road completely blocked off starting at Kimberton Road near the entrance to Phoenixville Plaza.