$1 million damage in downtown Hamilton fire that spread to multiple floors


Published January 30, 2023 at 4:00 pm

Fire broke out in a boarded-up, three-story building in downtown Hamilton on Monday morning, causing an estimated $1 million in damage.

The fire was discovered around 8 a.m. at 33 Hess St. S. and George St., and heavy smoke was visible to the first responding crews from Hamilton Fire Department’s Ray St. station. Flames were reportedly seen coming from both the second and third floors.

Chief David Cunliffe of HFD said that the responding firefighters were able to get the fire contained at its source. But the flames had spread into the building’s walls and attic/roof area.

“Firefighters were able get the fire on the second and third floors under control quickly,” Cunliffe wrote on Monday afternoon in a media release. “However, it had extended into the walls and attic space/roof area of the building. It took firefighters considerable time to access the walls and attic/roof area to extinguish the fire. During search operations no occupants were found. The building has sustained significant damage. Crews are still on scene performing a fire watch. Damage estimates are in the neighbourhood of $1 million.”

The cause of the fire is not yet established. The Office of the Fire Marshal has been notified.

The fire started while HFD had crews still at the scene of a fire at a heritage building on Barton St., Cunliffe added. The chief added that three firefighters sustained minor injuries whilst battling the blaze — two got minor cuts and one strained their knee.

(Photo: Hamilton Fire Department.)

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