Two firefighters who saved two residents from a burning apartment building in Kansas City were killed Monday night after suffering injuries when the structure collapsed around them, authorities said.
Fire Chief Paul Berardi said two other firefighters were injured as the massive fire engulfed the block-long structure on the city’s northeast side. Kansas City police and a response team from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are investigating the incident. The cause of the fire was not immediately clear.
Berardi lauded the bravery of the two firefighters who died and the scene was described as chaotic and apparently deteriorated quickly.
Fire Department Battalion Chief James Garrett told the Kansas City Star that the building was already heavily damaged when firefighters arrived. They were clearing an area where a roof had started to cave in about 7:30 p.m. when the building collapsed, Garrett said.