Fire destroys 2 Poplar Bluff businesses, 'worst fire in 20 years'

Roads closed in Poplar Bluff because of business fire
Published: Aug. 10, 2016 at 3:00 PM CDT|Updated: Aug. 11, 2016 at 7:24 PM CDT
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(Source: Heartland Viewer)
(Source: Heartland Viewer)
(Source: KFVS Viewer)
(Source: KFVS Viewer)

POPLAR BLUFF, MO (KFVS) - The Poplar Bluff Fire Department responded to a fire at a building in downtown Poplar Bluff, Mo on Wednesday afternoon.

The fire started inside a building at the corner of S. Broadway and Vine streets.

As of 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, the fire was nearly contained.

Police Chief Danny Whitely said this is the worst fire he can remember in Poplar Bluff's recent history.

"As soon as the fire department arrived they saw it was going to be a large fire with that structure so they called in all available people and asked for assistance from Butler County Fire Department and they responded.  So far they are just trying to keep it from spreading to other buildings in the area," Whitely said.

The building was occupied by Rosie's Gifts and McNeely Shoe Service, and six apartments. Fire officials say the building is a total loss.

The Red Cross set up a tent nearby and said they would be providing relief to the victims who lost their homes.

Damage from the fire spread next door to Sandy's Cab on Broadway street. The roof caved in and fire officials say the building is a total loss.

The owner of Myrtle's Place Back Alley BBQ said three of her employees lived in the building, one resident told KFVS he lost everything in the fire.

Power was cut out in a section of downtown including the public library, and Dollar General.

Parts of Highway 60 were closed from 2nd Street to 5th Street along with most of the downtown streets so firefighters could put out the blaze.

There are no reports of any injuries. Two firefighters reportedly had to take a break due to smoke, but are not injured in anyway. Another was treated at the scene for exhaustion, but did not need to be transported.

It's not clear how the fire started yet because crews are still fighting the fire. The fire marshal will be called after the fire is put out.

The Fire Marshall along with The Poplar Bluff Fire Department will be investigating what caused the fire, but there is no word on a cause at this time.

We'll have more information as it becomes available.

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