RENSSELAER FALLS — An apartment building was engulfed in flames Saturday afternoon.
Rensselaer Falls Fire Chief Dallas R. Denny said between 50 and 60 firefighters were on the scene at 209 Rensselaer St. No injuries were reported, and no one was inside the building when firefighters arrived, he said.
Flames were spitting out the sides and roof of the apartment building at the corner of Rensselaer Street and Front Street near the banks of the Oswegatchie River, according to witnesses on scene.
“It was fully involved when we arrived,” Mr. Denny said. “We went defensive on it.”
Two drafts were set up to provide water to battle the blaze, Mr. Denny said.
Fire departments working the flames were from Rensselaer Falls, Heuvelton, DeKalb Junction, Canton, Lisbon and Morley.
The building was destroyed in the blaze and at 4 p.m. firefighters were waiting for an excavator from the town of Canton to arrive to knock the building down.
Mr. Denny said he believed there were five apartments in the building, but they were not all occupied.
The cause of the fire has not been determined. County fire investigators were on the scene and have launched an investigation.
The building is owned by Anhminh Reynolds, with a village Post Office box, according to St. Lawrence County property records.
St. Lawrence County editor Tom Graser contributed to this report.
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CORRECTION: Apartment #4 was NOT on the Left at the top of the hallway stairs, Apartment #4 was a 2 bedroom on the RIGHT at the top of the hallway stairs above #3.
CORRECTION: Apartment #4 is NOT on the Left at the top of the stairs, Apartment #4 is a 2 bedroom apartment on the RIGHT at the top of stairs above #3.
There were a total of 6 apartments in that building: Apartment #1 where the fire started was a 2 bedroom on the first floor on the Rensselaer Street and Front Street side of the building; Apartment #2 was a 1 bedroom between #1 and the hallway stairs on the first floor on the Front Street side/corner next to the neighboring property; Apartment #3 was a 2 bedroom on the first floor next to the parking lot off of the Rensselaer Street side; Apartment #4 was a 2 bedroom at the top of the stairs on the left on the second floor above #3 on the Rensselaer Street parking lot side; Apartment #5 was a 2 bedroom at the top of the stairs on the left in the hallway of the Front Street side/corner of the neighboring property in the building above apartments #1 and #2; and Apartment #6 was a 1 bedroom on the second floor above #1 on the Front Street-Rensselaer Street corner of the building at the end of the hallway past #5 in front of the fire escape stairs that lead down to the front yard on the Rensselaer Street side. ALSO, I hope the Red Cross knows that a man by the name of Mr. Terry Wilson who was the sole occupant of Apartment #4 and not home at the time of the fire due to him currently being hospitalized at Claxton-Hepburn medical center in Ogdensburg NY earlier in the week for an unrelated medical problem may still need their assistance as the only thing of his to survive the fire is his red Dodge car that still sits in the back corner of the apartment building parking lot.
I hope everyone is okay.😔
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