16:30 GMT +314 October 2019
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    Massive Three-Alarm Fire Engulfs 115-Year-Old US Church

    Videos: Massive Three-Alarm Fire Engulfs 115-Year-Old US Church

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    A three-alarm fire engulfed the Greater Bible Way Temple, a 115-year-old church in West Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on Tuesday afternoon, raising concern that the structure may collapse as a result.

    Around 100 firefighters are currently battling the blaze and are expected to remain at the scene throughout the night, Philadelphia Fire Commissioner Adam Thiel confirmed to multiple outlets Tuesday. 

    ​“This is an active firefight,” Thiel is reported as saying. “We will be here the entire night dealing with this active firefight.” 

    ​“We’re worried about collapses [because] there are parts of the building that have already collapsed into it - we have parts of the building collapsed out onto the street, so we’re sort of in a standoff mode,” Thiel added.

    Fire officials are urging residents to avoid the area until the fire is put out. Several buildings adjacent to the church may also need to be evacuated.

    ​There are no reported deaths as a result of the incident. One unidentified person was transported to the hospital, CBS Philly reported.

    Fire marshals are currently investigating the cause of the blaze, which erupted just before 3 p.m. local time. According to local news outlet WPVI, several workers were on the roof when the fire was first reported.

    ​The Philadelphia branch of the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is presently on scene.


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