Of the two people who were rescued from a burning building at Bathurst and Richmond street this morning, one has succumbed to their injuries, according to Toronto Fire Chief Matthew Pegg. Details of the person who died in hospital Monday morning have not yet been revealed to the public.
This news follows the developing story of a five-alarm fire that broke out at in the basement of a downtown Toronto building at 160 Bathurst Street early this morning. According to news reports, the spread of this "difficult" fire was challenging to control, potentially impacting the surrounding buildings within the area.
Firefighters pulled two people from the basement of the building, and Toronto paramedics then rushed them to hospital for treatment. At this time, the two victims' identities have not been publicly revealed.
According to a report by CP24, Toronto Fire Chief Matthew Pegg told the press, "Crews are having a tough time. This is a difficult fire. There is a heavy volume of fire inside and you can see by the design and location of the building, there are exposure buildings on either side."
"Our crews were focused immediately of course on locating and removing the victims. Now that they’re out obviously our efforts are on controlling the fire and preventing the spread."
@Toronto_Fire crews have located and removed two patients from the building. Now in the care of @TorontoMedics in critical condition. Fire has been upgraded to 4th alarm due to exposure risks. Operations ongoing. Richmond and Bathurst closed to traffic @TPSOperations pic.twitter.com/ZNDfqbA4Ly— Matthew Pegg (@ChiefPeggTFS) March 4, 2019
"The flames were very very intense. It escalated and grew very very quickly. That’s why you heard our incident commanders declare ‘urgent urgent urgent.’ That’s an indication to our crews inside that conditions are no longer safe inside. They wanted them out," Pegg said.
“When we’re in the downtown core like this and in an urban environment where the exposures are so tight, it becomes a real challenge for us,” Pegg explained.
WATCH: Toronto Fire Chief Matthew Pegg says one of two people injured in a fire at Bathurst and Richmond has died pic.twitter.com/slB8po72gS— NEWSTALK1010 (@NEWSTALK1010) March 4, 2019
Toronto Fire has recommended that people should avoid the Bathurst and Richmond area if possible. Local residents should expect power outages, as hydro is being shut down in the region due to the fire.
Bathurst Street is closed both ways between Richmond and Queen streets. TTC has also reported that service around the area is being diverted.