Today the city of Madera is sifting through the rubble of the historic Madera Mini Mall. The structure at Yosemite and E street was gutted by a massive fire late Monday afternoon.
James Forga is the Battalion Chief of Cal-Fire Madera. He says at first it was hard to locate where the fire initially started.
“Trouble locating the fire, the seed of the fire,” says Forga. “There was smoke coming out of the front of the building already.”
By the time crews located the source of the fire it was too late. Most of the building at that point was engulfed in flames.
Madera’s Mayor Andy Medellin says he was shocked how quickly it all happened.
“Incredibly, it spread so fast and so quick,” says Medellin.
According to the mayor the most important thing for all agencies involved was getting everyone out alive.
“The team work that came in from all of the departments was just extraordinary,” says Forga. “We did not have any injuries.”
According to Medellin the building was a piece of the city’s past that can never be recovered.
“There is a lot of historic value to not only this building but also our entire downtown,” says Medellin. “So, it was a very sad day for Madera.”