Fire crews battle hot spots, brace for more collapses a day afte - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Fire crews battle hot spots, brace for more collapses a day after Whiskey Row blaze began

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Firefighters remained on scene Tuesday, battling hot spots and bracing for more collapses. Firefighters remained on scene Tuesday, battling hot spots and bracing for more collapses.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- It took almost three hours for crews to get control of the fire at Whiskey Row Monday afternoon and, a day later, crews were still blasting water onto the hotspots and bracing for floors and walls to crumble 

"One of our main concerns are still interior collapses," said Louisville Fire and Rescue Capt. Sal Melendez. "We haven't had any through the night however due to the amount of water that has been put on these walls and side, that's always possibility." 

Firefighters were called to West Main Street around 4:30 Monday afternoon. They say when they got there, the fire was already big. 

Flames and smoke streamed out of the roof and windows for hours, but no one was hurt.  

Officials are now investigating what caused the blaze. 

"Arson had been interviewing people and just talking about what was going on prior to the fire," Melendez said. 

We're told construction work on the buildings started a few weeks ago and crews were working there Monday. 

The plan was to develop the properties into restaurants, office spaces and apartments. 

Experts say all of the buildings are at least 100 years old. 

"It was filled with whiskey distillers and many other types of merchants, even things like agricultural supplies so this was really a hot bed of commerce back in its hey day," said Preservation Louisville Executive Director Marianne Zickuhr. 

Firefighters say they have saved the iron facades. 

Zickuhr says this is one of the most historic blocks in the city. 

"These buildings aren't going anywhere," she said. "They were built tough and they are extremely resilient as you can see, so there will be a bright future for Whiskey Row." 

Developers plan to have structural engineers look at how stable the buildings are. 

They say they are committed to the future of Whiskey Row. 

Brown-Forman is planning to build a whiskey distillery in two buildings next to the ones affected by the fire. A company spokesperson says as of right now, this fire will not impact their plans. 

More: Whiskey Row businesses reopen after 24 hours of mayhem

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