Firefighters are still battling a 4-alarm fire at a Payless shoe store in Upper Darby, Pa. The blaze broke out around 5:45 p.m. Monday night at 72 South 69th Street.
“Less than five minutes to engulf the whole Payless store," said Tony Escarffullett.
Tony Escarffullett was working next door at Kicks USA.
“We smelled smoke coming from the back, so we went to go check the back, and the whole back was like engulfed in smoke. So we just ran out of there --right next store," he told FOX 29.
Upper Darby and other fire crews arrived fast and dispatched ladder trucks. They rushed 175 firefighters-- even those off duty-- to the scene. The fire smoked out the entire neighborhood. Shops and homes behind the building were quickly evacuated.
As it began to get dark, crews focused their concerns on the stability of the building--calling in engineers. The actual fire damage contained to the Payless store, but no one will be allowed inside their homes until inspectors are sure there's no risk of collapse. Several firefighters suffered heat exhaustion. They are expected to be OKAY and one firefighter was taken to the hospital with minor injuries, according to authorities.
So far, a cause has not been determined.
This is a developing story, please stay with FOX 29 for updates.