Still and Box for CFD: Near Miss Stairwell Collapse in Chicago

A fire in a three story multiple family apartment building injured four City of Chicago (IL) firefighters when an interior stairway collapsed during firefighting operations.

The building was constructed in 1927 and consisted of 5456 square feet of space with 3-5 apartment units. Built of masonry wall construction with a wood floor joist system, the fire was reported at 8:43 a.m., in the Type III classified occupancy.

Street View Pre-Fire

The fire began as a basement fire that travelled up two floors, eventually compromising an upper stairway which resulted in compromise and collapsed injuring four Chicago firefighters.

The inherent characteristics of the building and the manner of fire travel and impingement are apparent contributors to the event.


Aerial- Alpha; Goggle Maps

CFD Fireground Operations: Photo Tim Olk


The four firefighters sustained injures during operations when the internal stairwell connecting the second and third floors gave way.

The mayday was transmitted, and a  211 Plan 1 at approximately 09:00 hrs., seventeen minutes into the operation according to published reports issued by Deputy District Chief Lynda Turner.  Following the mayday and firefighter removals, defensive operations were initiated.

Two of the firefighters sustained smoke inhalation and two firefighters minor injuries, according to Fire Department officials.

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