Crews Investigate Cause of Fire at Shared St. Paul Business, Apartments

November 18, 2018 05:39 PM

Crews are working to learn what caused a building fire in St. Paul late Saturday night.

According to the St. Paul Fire Department, the fire happened at about 9:30 p.m. on Selby Avenue and North St. Albans Street in the Summit-University neighborhood.


Firefighters were at the scene early Sunday morning in case the fire rekindled.

Firefighters told a KSTP crew the building was destroyed and is too unstable for them to enter to fully investigate.

A KSTP crew learned the building is split between two businesses - Clean Cuts Barber Shop and Avenue Grocery. Both businesses were in the process of moving out of the building.

The building also has several apartments above the ground level.

The St. Paul fire chief said authorities still do not know what sparked the fire, whether it was suspicious or whether everyone made it out safely.

Chief John Mentzos said there were concerns about two people living in upstairs apartments, who hadn’t been accounted for as of Sunday morning. Officials have confirmed those people made it out safely.

“Life safety is number one. That's what we're here for, to make sure everybody gets home and everybody gets out of the building,” said St. Paul Fire Department District Chief Art Rodriguez. “You risk a lot to save a lot so I'm sure that's what the company did last night. We're just making sure the rest of it is taken care of today."

The fire department said crews used hundreds of gallons of water to fight the fire and the building is now coated in ice.

Firefighters said cold weather was a major challenge in battling the fire.

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Alex Jokich & Rebecca Omastiak

Copyright 2018 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company


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