UPDATE @ 6:15 p.m.: The cause of the fire at the strip mall, in the 1800 block of National Road (U.S. 40) West, remains under investigation, Mike Davis, Richmond Fire Department chief of fire prevention, told Pal-Item.com.
Crews were able to extinguish the fire about 12 hours after it was reported.
The collapse of the building’s roof complicated putting out the fire, trapping flames in small areas between layers of rubble, Assistant Chief Tim Brown said.
The fire department had to call in an excavator to pull down the building’s facade and part of a front wall so crew could get to the flames.
Crews were dispatched to the business to find flames in the vacant building that once was Anytime Fitness, in a plaza between Great Wall (restaurant) and a Dollar General.
No injuries were reported.
A strip mall sustained heavy damage from an early morning fire, according to our partners at Kicks96.
The fire started around 4:30 a.m. on U.S. 40. A bank, dollar store, a Chinese restaurant and a pawn shop operate businesses in the strip mall where the fire broke out.
Firefighters were ordered out of the building when a portion of the roof collapsed.