Downtown GR apartment building evacuated for roof fire


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — A six-story downtown apartment building sustained extensive damage to two floors and the roof due to a fire at midday Sunday.

At 11:50 a.m. Sunday, the Grand Rapids Fire Department responded to a report of smoke and flames at the Ferguson Apartments at 72 Sheldon Blvd. SE. Upon arriving at the scene, firefighters spotted smoke and flames on the roof and issued a second alarm to bring in more firefighters.

GR Fire video from Jeff Cremonte

The entire building was immediately evacuated and the fire was quickly extinguished. Firefighters were expected to remain on scene until mid-afternoon cleaning up.

There were no injuries to either residents or firefighters.

GRFD Capt. Paul Mason was at the scene and told FOX 17 that the fire started in either a heating/ventilation/air conditioning unit or solar panels on the roof. Multiple HVAC and solar units were involved in the fire, which was limited to the roof area.

Mason said the roof and apartments on the fifth and sixth floors suffered extensive damage. A total of 83 residents on those floors have been displaced by the fire.

Once the evacuation is ended, residents of the first, third and fourth floors will be able to return to their apartments. The second floor is under renovation and no one is currently living there.