By JAMES BELL
RUSSELL — At approximately 10:40 a.m. Thursday, Russell Fire and EMS were dispatched to 815 N. Main in Russell in response to reports of a structure fire.
“When crews arrived on scene, heavy smoke was coming from Northwest of the main entrance to The Mecca Plaza,” said Fire Chief Dylan Riedel. “Fire crews made entry into the structure and determined that the fire was burning in the underground tunnels that run below the sidewalk, in front of the businesses on Main Street.”
At 10:50 a.m., firefighters entered the basement with fire extinguishers and found heavy smoke in the tunnel.
By 10:56 a.m., a hose line was called in as the fire was reported as mostly out. It was reported as completely out by 11:10 a.m.
The cause of the fire is undetermined, Riedel said, noting the fire did not spread to any other area of the building outside the basement. Damage is estimated at $500. No injuries were reported.
“The City of Russell Fire Department would like to thank The Russell Police Department, Russell Grant Fire Department, Russell County EMS, Russell Electric Department, and Kansas Gas Service for their quick response,” Riedel said.