Firefighters battle blaze at Gainesville pool store

At 7:29 p.m. Monday night Gainesville Fire Rescue responded to a commercial building fire at 4404 NW 13th St. First arriving crews from station 5 found fire through the roof on Family Pool Spa and Billiard Center.

Crews quickly began an interior fire attack that brought the fire, which had spread to two stories, under control. Incident Commander Jeff Schuhmacher said the operation was more difficult due to the amount of water reactive chemicals and the heavy fire load stored inside.

Additional arriving crews were able to search the building for anyone trapped inside and conduct vertical ventilation; cutting a hole in the roof to release superheated gasses to limit the spread of the fire. In total 13 fire apparatus and Gainesville Fire Rescue’s Hazardous Materials (HazMat) response team were required to bring the fire under control.

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This is the second fire at this location in less than a year. In 2020 GFR crews spent four days at this location while clean-up crews removed excess chemicals damaged by the previous fire. Chief Schuhmacher commented that the fire being discovered early by a passerby and the aggressive actions by E5’s crew stopped the 2021 fire from being much worse.

No victims were found during the initial search, no injuries were reported due to the fire, and the cause of the fire is currently under investigation.

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