Listen Live

COLUMBUS, Ind. — A fire in downtown Columbus took hours to put under control and collapsed a building.

The call for the fire came around 11:50 Saturday night, and police responded to 5th Street for one of the buildings that caught on fire. As firefighters began to fight the blaze, part of the building collapsed, then it soon spread to another building.

Firefighters tried to search the second building for anyone inside, and a cat ran out to safety after firefighters burst through a door, but they found no people inside.

They were soon called back outside due to the intense danger from the heat and smoke, and firefighters were ordered to put out the fire from the outside. Soon, part of the façade on the building fell off and onto the ladder of a fire truck. No one was on the ladder when the debris fell.

A nearby business, Realty One, opened up to give a warm shelter to the approximately 40 firefighters in the night and began to order coffee for them. The Salvation Army joined in on supporting the first responders with food and drinks.

Power was shot off to the area downtown from the danger that the fire had to the power lines.

The cause and extent of damage of the fire is unknown, but an investigation is underway.