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Firefighters battle Bellaire blaze

Photo/KRISTIN MAZGAJ ALL THAT remains of a structure on 41st Street in Bellaire after an early morning fire Wednesday is a pile of debris.

BELLAIRE — Firefighters battled a massive blaze at a structure located in the 600 block of 41st Street in Bellaire early Wednesday morning.

According to published reports, one firefighter was burned during the incident. The home’s occupants were able to escape the fire safely, but two people were taken to a hospital for minor injuries.

Village Administrator Mike Wallace said when he was driving to work early Wednesday, at about 5 a.m., he could see sparks flying from the power lines near the fire scene.

Wallace said decades ago he used to live on one side of the building, located at 623-625 41st St. near the Circle K gas station intersection.

“I lived in the upper lower side when I first got married in 1973. I lived there until 1984,” Wallace said.

Wallace noted that while he lived there he did some remodeling work. In one wall he discovered the building was built in 1925, as he found a receipt from that year for a delivery of plaster building materials via wagon.

Wallace believes the fire began about 4:30 a.m. and was burning very hot by the time he began his duties for the day.

“When I came in at 5 a.m. it was on the ground by then. It was a tinderbox,” he said.

“It was hot and it did some damage to some buildings around it, to the vinyl siding and cracked windows,” Wallace added.

He noted that the flashes of the electrical lines burning and breaking “lit up the whole sky.”

Wallace said he did not have any information regarding an injured firefighter or others. Fire department officials could not be reached for comment late Wednesday.

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