WEST PHILADELPHIA (WTXF) - Dozens of families have been displaced from their homes and two firefighters were injured after a massive fire in Philadelphia’s Overbrook neighborhood on Monday morning.
The fire broke out inside the Overbrook Gardens four-story apartment around 2:30 a.m. on the 900 block of North 63rd Street. The fire reached five alarms before crews were able to get it under control later in the morning.
Around 60 families have been displaced as a result of the fire. Two firefighters were treated for minor injuries.
BREAKING: @RedCrossPhilly is assisting nearly 60 families at John Barry Elementary School. We are told it’s serving as a warming center until families are placed in more long term temporary housing.— Lauren Dawn Johnson (@LaurenDawnFox29) December 10, 2018
Emergency crews temporarily shut off electricity and gas service in the area as a precaution. Monday morning's bitter cold temperatures also created icing on roadways and trees at the scene.
Structural concerns forced firefighters out of the building after parts of the structure started to collapse.
Displaced families were temporarily relocated to nearby Commodore John Barry Elementary school, which served as a warming center until they were moved to West Philadelphia High School.
Overbrook Gardens is owned by Berger Real Estate Investment, a local firm that runs several buildings in the city. City records show taxes are current and that there was an open violation for a malfunctioning radiator and rodent hole. The company did not return an emailed request for comment Monday afternoon.
A number of pets remain unaccounted for following the fire. At least one cat and one turtle were rescued Tuesday as Red Paw Relief continues its search for animals inside the building.
When you spent a day thinking you lost everything in a massive fire & @RedPawRelief finds that you didn’t lose your most precious thing, a pet who’s eyes tell you what it’s like to survive 5 alarm flames, incredible smoke&all that water to put it out @FOX29philly pic.twitter.com/3hc314iNs9— Steve Keeley (@KeeleyFox29) December 11, 2018
That thing they say about cats having 9-lives....it’s true. Fire survivor here in what’s left of Philadelphia 5 alarm fire apartment building that was still burning 24 hours after. Here survivor&savior together. @RedPawRelief @FOX29philly pic.twitter.com/RXKKVwzoG1— Steve Keeley (@KeeleyFox29) December 11, 2018
The Red Cross continues to assist families affected by the incident.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation.