Kingsville Fire - FF 38, 47 Erie St. S. 4th Alarm, Leamington
At 05:20, Wednesday July 18, 2012 Leamington Fire Services was dispatched to the Sunset Club at 47 Erie St. South in Leamington. There were reports of fire coming from a window on the second story.
Civilians who saw the fire rushed to wake up the tenants who lived above the business, pounding on doors, and shouting. Those residing in the building were able to get out to safety with out being harmed.
Leamington Fire Services arrived at 05:25 and were made aware that everyone was out of the building. Fire crews immediately took a defensive posture and started work from the outside. Mutual aid was requested, bringing in Kingsville and Lakeshore Fire Departments.
About 70 firefighters from the three departments fought the blaze for over 12 hours. Crews had to undergo an assessment by EMS at regular intervals due to the temperature being above 40 Celsius (100F) with saturated air due to the humidity.
The Sunset Club, and the apartments above are completely uninhabitable, as a result of the fire gutting the entire building. Several surrounding businesses have suffered extensive smoke, water, and fire damage as a result from battling the blaze.
The establishment used to be know by several names, including the Village Inn. Locals still often refer to it as the V.I. The building housed so much history, that has now been lost. It used to be a Speakeasy during Prohibition, with a bar in the basement that required a secret knock to enter, like most speakeasy's.
The Office of the Ontario Fire Marshall is still investigating on Friday, July 20. Early damage estimated are pegged at $2,000,000. I bystander was treated by EMS for smoke inhalation.