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Water from north side fire causing damage to neighboring businesses

Posted at 6:34 PM, Nov 01, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-01 19:34:57-04

A Tuesday night fire destroyed one building but is affecting several others.

In the 7500 blk. of Appleton Ave., firefighters battled an intense blaze at a business. The fire was so intense, firefighters were forced out of the building. None were hurt. 

Almost the entire first floor of the business collapsed into the basement and much of the second floor collapsed as well. Flames were seen shooting high out of the roof of the building. However, firefighters were able to contain the blaze to just the one building despite several other businesses being extremely close by. But with the water they used to battle the blaze, it's affecting those same businesses in a different way. 

"We don't know how much more is going to come in here because the water is so high where the fire was," Steve Robbins, the owner of the building said. "They think the water will still keep coming in here."

Robbins was told the water in the basement of the building is knee high. The cinder blocks in the basement are damp with moisture from the adjoining building and there is some water on the floor. 

"This is a sight for sore eyes to see," Robbins said. "You can see it pouring in."

Like a leaky dam, the water is steadily coming into one of his basements. A constant light stream of water is filling one of the basements. 

"It's like a small water line," Robbins said. "Oh my God. It's going to get worse down here."

Robbins is concerned about mold forming from the standing water. He has already contacted his insurance company to figure out how to take care of the water issue but he knows, this could have been a lot worse. 

"A lot of people lost their businesses over there," Robbins said. "That's terrible. I feel very lucky. We weren't thinking this was going to be this minor in any way."