A fire broke out at the historic Frager's Hardware store in Capitol Hill Wednesday evening.
More than 200 firefighters and 50 fire trucks were dispatched to the scene of the four-alarm fire in the 1100 block of Pennsylvania Avenue. The fire broke out at around 6 p.m.
Fire officials say two D.C. firefighters were transported to the hospital after sustaining minor injuries battling the blaze. There are no report of any civilian injuries.
The main building was evacuated. Firefighters say other buildings were in danger of catching fire.
The smoke from the fire was so large that it could be seen for miles in the District.
For residents who live nearby, D.C. Fire and EMS Deputy Fire Chief John Donnelly says, "The advice we're giving people is to go back into their house, keep the windows shut, turn your air conditioning on. That's the best protection you can take from the smoke."
Frager's Hardware was opened in 1920 and is located 11 blocks away from the U.S. Capitol.
"Frager's has been an institution," said D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray. "I don't think there's anybody who has been in this city for more than a year who doesn't know about Frager's Hardware. If you wanted a particular hardware item, you would go to Frager's and get it because you know you could find it. I've been there many times myself."
D.C. Councilmember Tommy Wells says Frager's Hardware is "part of the heartbeat of this whole neighborhood" and the fire is "an absolute tragedy for the community."
Southeast Street Closures Due to a Structure Fire
The Metropolitan Police Department would like to inform the public that the following streets will be closed due to the Frager’s Hardware fire in the 1100 block of Pennsylvania Avenue, SE.
· Pennsylvania Avenue from 10th to 12th Streets, SE (eastbound closed)
· 11th and 12th Streets (northbound) at G Street, SE
· E Street at 10th Street, SE
**Pennsylvania Avenue (westbound) is open**
The Metropolitan Police Department and the D.C. Department of Transportation are urging all motorists to travel the suggested alternate routes:
· Benning Road
· East Capitol Street
· Route 295
· 695 (11th Street bridge)
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