Firefighters battle roof fire at Cape apartment building

Monday, September 21, 2009
Cape Girardeau Fire Department firefighters douse a second-story blaze in an apartment building on North Sprigg Street on Sunday night in Cape Girardeau. Photographer Spencer Mares lives in another apartment in the same building. (Photo Submitted by Spencer Mares)

Firefighters spent more than an hour battling a fire that ravaged an apartment building near the Show Me Center on Sunday night.

The Cape Girardeau Fire Department received a report around 9 p.m. Sunday that the roof of a building in the apartment complex in the 1300 block of North Sprigg Street was on fire.

According to assistant fire chief Mark Hasheider, the fire appeared to start in the attic of the building and spread quickly to a second floor apartment unit.

The cause of the fire is unknown and is still under investigation, Hasheider said.

The building houses 12 units, but a firewall splits them down the middle.

Firefighters throw items from a second-story balcony after controlling a fire in a North Sprigg Street apartment building Sunday evening in Cape Girardeau. (Kit Doyle)

There were six units affected by the fire, and one firefighter was injured during the blaze, Hasheider said. He was transported to an area hospital for treatment.

Danielle Auer, a student at Southeast Missouri State University, was at home in her upstairs apartment when the fire began, she said.

"I got a knock on the door and they said the roof was on fire," she said.

The flames were visible from Sprigg Street when firefighters arrived, Hasheider said.

Because of the intensity of the fire, Scott City and Jackson fire departments were initially called to assist with operating other Cape Girardeau stations during the blaze.

Around 9:45 p.m. a second alarm was raised, and East County Rural Fire Protection District assisted Cape Girardeau while firefighters worked on the labor-intensive job of stripping insulation from the roof of the building.

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