Fire forces Amedia Plaza evacuation

Fire workers stand near the scene of a fire Thursday afternoon in Youngstown.
Fire workers stand near the scene of a fire Thursday afternoon in Youngstown.

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – A fire accidentally started by two construction workers forced tenants at Amedia Plaza in downtown Youngstown to evacuate the building Thursday afternoon, according to Youngstown Fire Department officials.

YFD Investigator Alvin Ware said two workers doing construction on the sixth floor of the apartment complex at 131 W. Boardman St. were using a grinder when sparks ignited a fire. The workers put out the flames with a fire extinguisher, only to hear an alarm go off while they were on their lunch break after the fire re-ignited, according to Ware.

The fire started around 12:30 Thursday afternoon, according to YFD Chief John O’Neill.

Everyone living at the complex evacuated the building as a precaution. The fire did not injure anyone, O’Neill said.

Fire officials began letting tenants back into the apartment around 1:10 p.m.

“A lot of times . . . the fire kind of gets away from them,” O’Neill said. “One of the best things you can do is not delay. If you do have a fire and you’re doing construction, even if it’s small, at least put the phone call in. If you do want to try to extinguish, that’s fine, but get us started, because they get away from you pretty quick.”

The apartment complex is home to people eligible for Section 8, or low-income, housing.

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