Fire that may have been sparked by a roof tarring job burned a building in downtown Juneau on Sunday afternoon.
The fire at the Endicott Building at Front and Seward street was called in as a small blaze just before 3 o’clock, but the fire quickly spread throughout the 103-year old building’s multiple roofs and void spaces and quickly became a major event endangering other structures. Front Street is three blocks south of the Capitol and a block from the waterfront.
The fire burned a Subway sandwich shop and a Chinese restaurant on the first floor and a travel firm and other businesses on the second floor.
Smoke from the fire billowed throughout the downtown area forcing the closure of nearby businesses and the evacuation of about 500 residents. Firefighters were pulled out of the buildings at about 4:30 because of the large amount of smoke generated by the fire. Flames were still visible at 8:00 p.m.
The entire Capital City Fire and Rescue corps responded to douse roofs of nearby buildings in the tightly packed downtown area, including a Ben Franklin store across an alley from the burning building.
Subway restaurant owner Wade Bryson says the fire began during a small roof-tarring repair job and later spread until the roof of the building caved in.
There were no serious injuries reported, but three firefighters were transported to Bartlett Regional Hospital to be treated for heat exhaustion and smoke inhalation.