Portland Fire & Rescue responded to 031 SW Caruthers St. on a Commercial building fire at 2222 hrs. 911/Dispatch received multiple calls on this fire. Callers reported the roof on fire and there was conflicting information that this was a vacant building and the it was an occupied 8-plex apartment building. An Engine crew responding on the 1st alarm (from the East-side & crossing over the Ross Is. Bridge) reported heavy fire from the roof.
A second alarm was called for at 2226 hrs as the first truck arrived. T4 reported heavy fire from a 3 Story ordinary construction building and a report of people on the 2nd floor. Fire fighters attempted an Offensive operation sending crews inside to search for any occupants and attack the fire. With in minutes the roof began to collapse and Command order everyone out of the building and the operation was moving to a Defensive fire attack. Crews at this point fight the fire from exterior positions and no one is inside.
A third alarm was called for at 2237 hrs; bringing the total number of firefighters onscene to approximately 104. 15 Engines, 5 Trucks, 1 Squad, 1 Rescues, 1 Air Unit, 1 Rehab Unit, 6 Chiefs, 4 Investigators, 1 Emergency Vehicle Service Unit, and various support staff vehicles responded. 2 AMR Ambulances and an AMR Supervisor were responded on the report of people in the building. They were returned on the recall at 2322 hrs.
Crews will remain on-scene throughout the night and all day tomorrow. The fire remains under investigation, only one minor civilian injury was reported and treated at the scene.
The conflicting reports on the status of the building were cleared up by Fire Investigators. This was a vacant and secured building, with first floor doors and windows boarded up. Evidently people had managed to enter the building at unknown location at the time of this release.