South Bend, Indiana Firefighters Fight Commercial Building Fire

BOB BLAKE

BOB BLAKE

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SOUTH BEND TRIBUNE — “A fire in the commercial strip commonly known as the “Fat Daddy’s block” disrupted traffic in downtown South Bend at the height of rush hour Monday.

South Bend Fire Marshal Frederico “Chico” Rodriguez said firefighters were called to 505 S. Michigan St., at the corner of Michigan and Monroe streets, shortly after 7 a.m. When firefighters arrived, they found smoke pouring from the south side of the structure.

“Right now preliminary indications all we know is that there were vagrants sleeping in there, homeless people sleeping in there,” Rodriguez said. “Exact how, whether they started the fire or something, we don’t know yet.”

Firefighters were able to get the fire under control in about an hour, Rodriguez said.

Rodriguez said there were no injuries in the blaze. 

The fire and response prompted police to shut down both South Michigan and South Main streets, two key north-south thoroughfares through the city, for a period Monday morning. Traffic was also disrupted along Monroe and South streets.

The building is owned by the city of South Bend and has been the subject of redevelopment talks for years.

The fire remains under investigation, Rodriguez said.”

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