2-Alarm Fire Destroys 'Suit Corner' In Old City - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

2-Alarm Fire Destroys 'Suit Corner' In Old City

Posted: Updated:
PHILADELPHIA -

Raging flames destroyed an Old City business in just minutes Wednesday morning and left two firefighters injured.

Our cameras were rolling as dozens of Philadelphia Fire Department firefighters battled the blaze at the "Suit Corner." The store is located at the corner of Third and Market streets, just a few feet away from a piece of American history.

The fire broke out around 9:15 a.m. on the same block as FOX 29's studios, while "Good Day Philadelphia" was live on the air. During an interview, fire trucks rushed past our studio, and it didn't take long to see something very serious was happening.

Soon, the fast-moving flames were shooting out of the building and into the street.

Witnesses and neighbors were left standing in the street, watching the flames spread from building to building.

Gary Ginsberg, owner of Suit Corner, spoke to FOX 29 during the fire. He said he and his employees heard an explosion and they began running outside.

"I tried to get the fire out," Ginsberg said. "We had our extinguisher, but it was just too powerful. We all ran out."

They also called for a tailor working on the second floor to evacuate.

The 60-year-old Suit Corner business is a retail icon in the city. There were no customers inside the store at the time of the fire.

Damage was heavy to the Suit Corner. Neighbors in an apartment building next door either were not home at the time or were forced to evacuate.

The fire quickly raced to a second alarm at 9:42 a.m. as more than 75 firefighters with 22 pieces of equipment battled the blaze and heavy, choking smoke that could be seen for miles around the scene.

Hundreds gathered along Market Street as firefighters scrambled to get the roaring fire under control.

Firefighters cut holes in the roof to vent the heat and protect nearby buildings.

One firefighter was taken Wednesday morning to Jefferson Hospital with what officials described as minor injuries.

Then, a second firefighter was transported from the scene shortly before 4 p.m.

There's no word yet on a cause from the fire marshal or agents from the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, who were also at the scene.

The fire was placed under control at 10:37 a.m., but crews remained at the scene dousing flames and hotspots, including a significant flare-up right around lunchtime.

The site was still smoldering more than seven hours after the fire began.

As for the response time to this fire, officials say the first fire company arrived within three minutes of the first alarm.

Ginsberg said it looked like the fire began in his store's front window, but that has not been confirmed by officials. The business owner, who told us he just lost his mother three weeks ago, is vowing to rebuild.

A nearby historical site was spared from the flames. But the U.S. National Park Service says the Franklin Court courtyard, Benjamin Franklin Museum and Franklin Court Printing Office were closed Wednesday as a result of the fire.

Market Street is still shut down, but should be open for the morning rush hour.

  • Local NewsMore>>

  • PECO Investigating Gas Odor in Phila Region

    PECO Investigating Gas Odor in Phila Region

    Saturday, August 30 2014 10:15 PM EDT2014-08-31 02:15:46 GMT
    A spokesperson for PECO confirms to Fox 29 News that crews are trying to find the source of a gas odor that has resulted in hundreds of calls to PECO on Saturday.About 400 calls have been placedto PECO as of 4pm Saturday; that is an elevated number of calls than a normal day, the spokesperson says. Crews that are trained in gas odor response are spread throughout the area to try to pinpoint the source of the odor. Reports of gas odors have been made by customers in Delaware, Montgomery, Chest...
    A spokesperson for PECO confirms to Fox 29 News that crews are trying to find the source of a gas odor that has resulted in hundreds of calls to PECO on Saturday.About 400 calls have been placedto PECO as of 4pm Saturday; that is an elevated number of calls than a normal day, the spokesperson says. Crews that are trained in gas odor response are spread throughout the area to try to pinpoint the source of the odor. Reports of gas odors have been made by customers in Delaware, Montgomery, Chest...
  • Students Prepare To Return To School With Free Supplies

    Students Prepare To Return To School With Free Supplies

    Saturday, August 30 2014 6:15 PM EDT2014-08-30 22:15:25 GMT
    We all know Labor Day Weekend is the unofficial end of summer, but it also mean something else...back to school.
    We all know Labor Day Weekend is the unofficial end of summer, but it also mean something else...back to school.
  • Summer Heat Returns

    Saturday, August 30 2014 4:11 PM EDT2014-08-30 20:11:25 GMT

    The rest of the holiday weekend continues to look warmer and unsettled. Shower and thunderstorm chances increase late Sunday and Labor Day.

    The heat and humidity will continue to expand Sunday into Labor Day. There is a risk of scattered showers and thunderstorms both day.  Best chance will be in the afternoon and evening. 

    Sunday (88/69): Clouds/Storm

    Monday (90/71): Clouds/Storm

    Tuesday (92/72): Clouds/Storm

     

     

Powered by WorldNow

WHBQ-TV | Fox 13
485 S. Highland St.
Memphis, TN 38111

Main Station: (901) 320-1313
Newsroom: (901) 320-1340

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices