Extra-alarm blaze destroys Southwest Side warehouse, shuts Pink Line

A Southwest Side warehouse partially collapsed during a 4-11 alarm blaze this afternoon that also caused the CTA to shut down the Pink Line for several hours.

The blaze was reported in a 100-by-300 foot, 2-story warehouse at 2441 W. 21st St. about 1:12 p.m., and as of 1:20 p.m. evacuations were underway, according to Fire Media. The 3-11 alarm was called at 1:40 p.m., and the 4-11 alarm followed soon after. The 4-11 alarm was struck out at about 3:47 p.m.

At about 2:43 p.m. Fire Media reported the building was starting to collapse.

Fire Department spokesman Larry Langford confirmed the building was in the process of collapsing. The masonry warehouse was not abandoned but it was not immediately known what it was being used for or what exactly was burning.

The blaze was so intense firefighters had not yet been able to search inside, he said about 3 p.m.

An Emergency Medical Services Plan 1 had been called, sending six ambulances to the scene, and a Level 1 Hazardous Materials Alert was in effect. But by about 2:05 p.m., the EMS Plan was secured and no injuries were reported. The Level 1 hazmat was secured when the 4-11 alarm was.

Heavy smoke was seen coming from the building as firefighters arrived, and fire was reported throughout the structure, according to Fire Media. All companies were working, with 11 master streams on the fire, and firefighters experienced exposure problems in addition to getting gas company help to shut off gas service to the building.

chicagobreaking@tribune.com
Twitter: @ChicagoBreaking

Copyright © 2012 Chicago Tribune Company, LLC

2 comments

  • Jeri Sawyer

    it is sad that CTA knowing that there was a fire at western and that shuttle buses were needed when we got to Central Park, know bus and when one came the driver park on the North side of Odgen and masses of people ran across Odgen to get to the bus, only one and there was no room for me with a walker, i finally got tried of waiting and took the Central Park bus, so sad that CTA did not send more than one bus

  • VEester

    Not impressed by CTA. I am from out of town and had no clue how to get to my destination & also stuck in the only shuttle bus available with over 100 people inside!

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