2 critically injured jumping to escape fire in West Garfield Park building

SHARE 2 critically injured jumping to escape fire in West Garfield Park building
screen_shot_2018_05_08_at_5_10_11_am_e1525774398330.png

Two people were critically injured early Tuesday after jumping from a fire in an unoccupied building in West Garfield Park | Tyler LaRiviere/Sun-Times

A man and a woman were critically injured when an unoccupied building they were staying in caught fire early Tuesday in the West Garfield Park neighborhood on the West Side, according to Chicago Fire Department Media Affairs.

The fire broke out about 3:13 a.m. at 4304 West Monroe, officials said.

The man and woman, who were believed to be squatting in the building, were injured when they jumped from the second or third floor to escape the fire, officials said. Both were taken by ambulance to Stroger Hospital in critical condition.

One of two people injured early Tuesday after jumping from a fire in an unoccupied building in West Garfield Park is taken to an ambulance | Tyler LaRiviere/Sun-Times

One of two people injured early Tuesday after jumping from a fire in an unoccupied building in West Garfield Park is taken to an ambulance | Tyler LaRiviere/Sun-Times

When they arrived on the scene, firefighters found heavy fire pouring out of the building from the third floor, according to Chicago Fire Deputy Chief Chuck Maes.

Firefighters used a deck gun and water lines on the rear and front of the building to put out the fire, Maes said.

Jonathon Anderson said he was riding his bicycle down the street when he heard a scream and heard a man shout that the building was on fire.

Anderson said bystanders gathered outside the blazing building, encouraging people to get out, and that he saw at least one person go inside the building to help a woman who could not climb down from the third floor. Shortly after, Anderson said he saw “a big ball of flame” come out of the building.

The woman eventually jumped from the third floor with a man, Anderson said.

Another man jumped from a third floor window and hung onto a ledge on the second floor before dropping to the ground below, Anderson said.

It was believed the two victims sustained injuries from falling from the building and it was unclear if they suffered burns or smoke inhalation from the fire, Maes said.

No other injuries were reported and Maes said he was not aware of any other fires in the building in the past.

The cause of the fire was under investigation. It was unclear if there were working smoke detectors in the building.

The Latest
The trial — a first for thousands of similar cases across the country to make it to a jury — has lasted three weeks. The jury of nine women and three men will now deliberate over whether the heartburn drug caused an 89-year-old Brookfield woman’s colon cancer.
For tourists, Illinois is the place to be for the historic cicada emergence. The 17-year cicadas will mainly cover the northern half of the state while the 13-year cicadas are centered mostly in the southern part, and the two are set to converge near Springfield.
Auction of the Memphis tourist attraction had been scheduled for Thursday.
Lawmakers were on track to blow their self-imposed deadline to pass a state spending plan, as Democratic leaders tangle over a proposed increase to the tax rate paid by sportsbooks, as well as a rollback of tax discounts for retailers.
The risk to the public remains low, but farmworkers exposed to infected animals are at higher risk, health officials said. As of Wednesday, the virus had been confirmed in 51 dairy herds in nine states.