OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – Months after a large apartment complex went up in flames, fire officials have released details about their investigation into the blaze.
In February, Oklahoma City firefighters were called a fire at The Canton at Classen Curve, a five-story apartment building near N.W. 63rd and Western.
The Canton Apartment Complex consisted of 374,507 square feet, and included a parking garage and two interior courtyard areas.
When firefighters arrived at the scene, they headed to the fifth floor and encountered a heavy amount of smoke.
“More resources began to arrive and more water supply was established and additional attack hoses were deployed, but the fire continued to grow in intensity. As firefighters on the roof attempted to fight back the fire from their positions, additional fires kept breaking through in various locations on the roof,” the report stated.
Crews attempted to put out the fire from the exterior and interior portions of the structure. However, the flames continued to spread.
Firefighters eventually had to evacuate their positions inside the building as portions of it began to collapse.
“The Incident Commander and other senior officers continued to try to manage the situation by coordinating the efforts of their crews, but each time they attempted to make headway, those attempts were thwarted by fires that had started in multiple locations and were growing through large void spaces at a very rapid pace,” the report states.
Officials say there were “multiple areas of origin that were long distances from each other and on opposite sides of a fire wall.”
The report states that the size of the building and the lack of a working alarm system allowed the fires to grow undetected for almost an hour before the fire department was called. Since the building was still under construction, the report says it was compliant with all applicable fire codes at the time of the fire.
It took four days to put the fire completely out, and then the structure was demolished.
It is the largest known commercial fire in the history of Oklahoma City according to OKCFD.
For months, fire investigators worked to determine the cause of the blaze.
Based on the investigation, officials say the fire is classified as accidental and was the result of an electrical issue.
“The fire occurred as a result of an electrically energized neutral (energized neutral) within the structure,” the report states.
The 326-room luxury apartment complex was scheduled to open sometime in the spring with apartments starting at 600 square feet, ranging from $1,100 to more than $4,000 a month.
The complex was valued at over $65 million.
“As expected, the fire department’s report confirms the building was in compliance with all fire codes and had passed all of its applicable suppression inspections. While this process took longer than anyone hoped, we are grateful for the diligent work required to reach a conclusion. As the report notes, this appears to be an accident caused by a bad utility connection inside an OG&E transformer.”
We look forward to quickly completing cleanup at the site. Humphreys Capital and our trusted development partners are beginning the complex process of evaluating our options for this prime location. The path forward will be determined by many factors, including the insurance claims process. We do not have a timeline for a final decision, but we look forward to sharing more information with the public when we are able.”Blair Humphreys, CEP Humphreys Capital