Authorities are on the scene of a large fire after an explosion at an apartment complex in Minneapolis Wednesday morning.
Fire crews responded to the blaze shortly after 8 a.m. at 514 Cedar Avenue South in Minneapolis. A witness at the scene who saw it all unfold told WCCO-TV he saw the entire building explode and at least three people jump out of windows to escape the fire.
Minneapolis Fire officials said crews responded to a report of an explosion at about 8:16 a.m. at a three-story building. When crews arrived, victims were jumping out of the building to escape the fire. Authorities said as many as 13 people were taken to hospitals with injuries and at least six of those victims suffered critical injuries.
Thirteen people have been hospitalized after a building explosion and fire in Minneapolis.
The three-alarm fire was on the 500 block of Cedar Avenue and started around 8 a.m. Wednesday. Smoke can still be seen pouring out of the multiple-story building.
A witness at the scene tells KSTP he heard an explosion and then saw the fire shortly after. Multiple victims were already outside when crews arrived, and flames were shooting about 20 feet out of the windows on the second and third floor, according to officials at the scene.
Minneapolis Fire Chief John Fruetel confirms 13 people have been hospitalized, six with critical injuries. He said it’s very difficult to fight the blaze because the bitter cold has turned the area into an ice rink.
Robert Ball of Hennepin County Emergency Medical Services says the victims have been taken to hospitals with injuries ranging from burns to trauma associated with falling or jumping from windows. Ball says there have been no reports of deaths. He says it’s unclear whether everyone has been evacuated because it’s still too dangerous for firefighters to sweep through the premises.