UPDATE: Crews continue fighting Superior warehouse fire, Mayor Paine explains
UPDATE: Crews in Superior say the fire is under control, but authorities are still on scene making sure any leftover hotspots don’t get out of control.
Crews responded to calls reporting flames at around 6:00am Thursday morning.
When they arrived on scene, one building was already engulfed in flames.
They initially focused on keeping the flames from spreading to the building next door, but it quickly became clear that wouldn’t be possible.
Firefighters diverted efforts to saving the second building, but it too eventually collapsed.
Fire Chief Scott Gordon said the freezing conditions made any water they used quickly turn to ice, making the firefight hazardous for crews.
“Slips and falls are our biggest concern when we’re dealing with fires like this. Then frostbite getting this water on your hands and your face,” said Gordon.
Ash and debris from the fire was seen falling throughout Superior.
David Jorgenson, a resident of Superior, says he saw the fire when it broke out this morning and witnessed ash falling in his front yard.
“I think the biggest one I found this morning was almost the size of a cigarette pack. [It was] a big square chunk of wood and it was still crunchy. It wasn’t even completely burned, the fire was that hot it threw it up,” said Jorgenson.
Mayor Jim Paine also spoke with press Thursday morning.
Paine said the destroyed buildings were more than 100 years old.
He believes they represent a piece of Superior’s history that is irreplaceable.
“I’ve always preferred to redevelop and to restore and preserve the things that we have. Losing [these two buildings] is a real tragedy, and it does set back some of our goals for the region. It won’t stop us, we will rebuild in this area,” said Paine.
SUPERIOR, WI -- Crews are actively fighting a warehouse fire in Superior’s North End district.
According to Superior Mayor Jim Paine, the fire started in the Siverston Fisheries building.
In a Facebook statement Thursday he said the building was quickly engulfed and the fire spread to the second building (Bayside) as it collapsed.
Both buildings are a complete loss.
Paine also said nobody was hurt in the fire and the buildings were both vacant.
“I’m deeply sorry for the loss to the owners and to our community,” said Paine.
He says the public is safe at this time.
Police started to close the Blatnik Bridge to and from Superior around 6:45 a.m. Thursday due to visibility issues caused by the smoke.
They asked drivers to re-route to the Bong Bridge if headed that way.
Paine is encouraging people not to spend much time outside and asks you to keep away from the fire as it continues to burn.
The bridge will remain open.
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