Detroit firefighters battle a blaze at Rosa Parks and Collingwood, on Detroit’s west side, on Tuesday, June 20, 2017. The fire consumed a four-story apartment building. No one was hurt.


Detroit — Commuters heading south on the Lodge Freeway or Interstate 75 toward downtown Detroit noticed a darkness in the clouds Tuesday morning as firefighters battled a blaze at a vacant apartment building on Detroit’s west side.

The fire started at about 5:27 a.m. at a vacant, four-story apartment building on Collingwood just west of Rosa Parks, said Dave Fornell, deputy commissioner of the Detroit Fire Department. The fire is believed to be "suspicious" in the early stages of the investigation, because the building had no electricity. Investigators will canvass the neighborhood for clues.

The blaze was “fully involved” on the building’s second, third and fourth floors by the time firefighters arrived. Immediately, their efforts turned to the defensive.

“Surround and drown,” Fornell said.

The fire department used two platforms, with two firefighters each shooting jets of water into the building. The firefighters in the path of the smoke wore breathing apparatuses.

No injuries were immediately reported.

Fire department resources were leaving the scene around 6:30 a.m. but still had the road blocked to northbound traffic.

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