BELLEVILLE, IL (KMOX)-One firefighter suffered an ankle injury and a couple others were treated for heat exhaustion battling a two alarm fire in Belleville late Friday night. Chief Tom Pour tells KMOX News that when firefighters arrived in the 200 Block N. 74th at about 10:15 pm, they found fire in the rear of the home. “They knocked that and right away found that the whole basement was involved.”
Pour says that because of the heat, he called for a second alarm. “We had poor water supply. The fact the fire had spread throughout the basement, was already into the attic, we took a defensive stand on it to make sure no one got hurt.”
A steep driveway resulted in a couple of firefighters suffering ankle injuries, says Pour. One was taken to Memorial Hospital for a possible broken ankle. Pour says x-rays were negative. A couple of other firefighters were looked at on the scene for heat exhaustion.
“Fortunately it was at nighttime, but it still was hotter than you know, with the guys in their turnout gear. Pretty intense flames. There were some oxygen bottles in the house that blew up, that kind of fueled the fire as well.”
Pour says the older gentleman who lived there was not home at the time. “He was pretty distraught when he saw the house. Believe he’s staying with family members for now.”
The fire’s cause is under investigation. “The structural stability of the building is very weak, so we weren’t able to do a thorough investigation, yet.”