St. Louis Public Radio News
10:36 am
Thu December 4, 2003

Five Fires Strike McRee Town

St. Louis, MO – Firefighters battled five separate blazes that broke out in within about 90 minutes of each other in the city's McRee Town neighborhood.

One firefighter who suffered a back injury was treated and released from St. Louis University hospital, and paramedics treated a second person for smoke inhalation at the scene.

Fire Department spokeswoman Capt. Kim Bacon says city firefighters were stretched thin:

"We had approximately 20 companies working within the McRee Town neighborhood, which is two-thirds of the St. Louis Fire Department's resources at any given time," said Bacon.

Police and firefighters are investigating the cause of the fires, all of which occurred within a three block area.

The fires were centered in five vacant homes that were slated for demolition.

The Garden District Commission is overseeing the revitalization of that neighborhood.

The commission and developer McBride and Sons are offering a $25,000 reward to anyone with information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the fires.