COLLEGE PARK, Md. (ABC7) — A five-alarm fire broke out Monday morning at a six-story apartment building under construction near the University of Maryland in College Park.
The University of Maryland closed down for the day at 1:00 p.m. “due to poor air quality” from the fire, according to school president Wallace Loh.
The fire was under control after nearly four hours of firefighting efforts. Fire officials say there are still many hot spots and fire crews will need to stay on the scene through the evening.
Mark Brady, a spokesperson for Prince George’s County Fire Department says this is one of the county’s largest ever firefighting efforts, with around 200 emergency personnel on scene.
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According to officials, firefighters arrived on the scene shortly before 10 a.m. to fire showing from the fifth floor of Fuse 47 apartments located at 4700 Berwyn House Road.
Since the building was under construction, no residents were living there yet, according to officials. However, ABC7’s Brad Bell reports construction workers were in the building when the fire broke out.
Fire Officials say there was one minor injury sustained during the fire.
Crews from the D.C., Montgomery County, Howard County and Anne Arundel County Fire Departments are assisting Prince George’s County firefighters with the blaze.
Brady reports the fire extended into the roof area. University of Maryland Police say Baltimore Avenue northbound is shut down from Campus Drive while fire crews work.
Heavy smoke filled the area and was so intense that senior citizens at the nearby apartments, Spellman House, were relocated.
UMD students were also highly impacted by the smoke which has reached the campus. ABC7’s Stephen Tschida says it is difficult to breath in the area near the fire.
PGFD’s Chief Barksdale gave an update at 4 p.m. According to Chief Barksdale, two firefighters sustained minor injuries.