NEW INFORMATION: Crews trying to find cause of fire at former Fall Creek church building

By: Lindsay Alowairdi and Andrew Fefer Email
By: Lindsay Alowairdi and Andrew Fefer Email

FALL CREEK, Wis. (WEAU)-- Investigators are trying to figure out what caused a fire at a Fall Creek building that used to house a church.

Crews responded to the former Saint John the Apostle Church on State Street Friday morning. Firefighters say the building was fully-engulfed when they arrived at the scene. Flames were visible from a north-facing side of the building as crews battled the fire.

"Looks like there's a few things salvageable, a lot of smoke damage, though," said Chief Robert Dewitz of the Fall Creek Area Fire District. "It was pretty smoky in there when we first got here on scene. There was flames rolling out of the walls on both sides. We were into a flash-over effect at that time. We were able to knock it down and put it out."

Dewitz said warm temperatures outside along with the flames caused conditions inside the building to become very hot. He said two of the departments that showed up to help were called in because of the heat. He said about 50 percent of the building's interior is scorched. He did not have a damage estimate, and said he was not aware of any suspicious circumstances surrounding the fire.

An owner, who was not at the building when the fire started, told us it had been converted into housing, and that it is zoned residential. Two tenants live in the building. Dewitz said one was in the basement when the fire started. He said the only person injured in the fire was a firefighter who ended up with heat exhaustion. Dogs in the building also got out safely.

Officers blocked off stretches of State Street and Tyler Avenue as they fought the fire.
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FALL CREEK, Wis. (WEAU) -- Crews are battling a fire at an old church in Fall Creek.

The fire is at the former Saint John the Apostle Church on State Street.
The owner of the building says it is no longer a church and has been converted into a home.

He says nobody was inside when the fire started. There were dogs there, but they got out.

Part of State Street and Tyler Avenue are blocked off while crews respond.

Firefighters from several departments are responding. We have a crew on the scene and will have the latest updates on www.weau.com and on our evening newscasts.


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