Five Alarms in Downtown Raleigh – Audio, Video, Photos, News + Run Card

This posting is a work in progress. Narrative, diagram, and other information is forthcoming. Looking for Legeros photos? They’re forthcoming!



  • March 22 – WNCN news links added, more suppression details, incident notes formatted, canteen service added, need to add to diagram “A/B/C/D explanation.”
  • March 21 – Added more news links, more damage details and times, etc. 
  • March 20 – Adding more photo and video links, more details to the incident details, etc.
  • March 19 – Added more incident notes:

Incident Summary

Click to enlarge:


  • Largest downtown fire in decades and/or since 1920s
  • Dispatched 10:03 p.m. Controlled at 1:10 a.m.
  • 35 degrees, clear skies, calm winds
  • Five alarms in first half-hour. 
  • Unfinished five-story apartment building with 241 studio, one-, and two-bedroom units.
    • Framed but without sheet rock.
    • Sprinkler system not yet installed.
    • Estimated half completed. [WNCN]
  • Rapidly spreading fire, entire building consumed
  • Four exposures on three sides: office, apartment, and mixed-used, multi-story buildings including one high-rise. 
  • Other structures also impacted by airborne embers that started fires. 
  • Ten buildings total damaged. [WRAL]
    • Five severely damaged. [WRAL]
    • At least three evacuated. [WRAL]
    • More than 205 apartments and 37 condos damaged, across three buildings. [WRAL]
    • At least 257 residents displaced from Link and Quorum. [WRAL]
  • Road closed for two blocks in all direction.
  • Power disrupted for about 250 customers, after fire disrupted equipment. [WRAL]
  • Four people injured and examined and/or treated by EMS, including one firefighter with falling glass that punctured his chest [WTVD], minor injury.
  • Fire resources included:  24 engines (include 2 squads/rescue pumpers), 7 ladders, 1 rescue,  2 air units, 5 BCs, 5 ACs, Fire Chief.
  • Fire personnel: 130 firefighters.
  • EMS resources: 12 EMS units, 5 DCs, 1 APP, special ops support unit, mobile ambulance bus.
  • EMS personnel: ~32 medics.
  • Fifteen mutual aid departments provided coverage at Raleigh fire stations
  • Total 119 calls received at ECC.
  • Suppression included:
    • Blitz monitors
      • A/B corner (E3)
      • B/C corner/B side #1 of 2 (E9)
      • B/C corner/B side #2 of 2 (E9)
      • D/A corner (E1)
      • others?
    • Aerial streams
      • A/B corner (L3, L4)
      • B/C corner (L2)
      • C/D corner (L8)
      • D side (L2)
      • D/A corner (L7), previously Dawson at Jones, for exposures
    • Hand lines
      • D side (E13?)
  • Apparatus damage included:
    • Engine 13 – Numerous light lens melted, burned/melted sections of light bar on cab, cracked window on rear of cab, hose bed cover burned, some sections of hose burned, some equipment inside compartment burned, some crinkling of reflective chevrons on rear of engine.
    • Ladder 4 – Lens on rear light bar melted.
  • Controlled in three hours
  • Suppression operations continued into morning
  • Overhaul operations continued into second day
  • Firefighters continued assisting occupants, investigators, and performed other functions on third day
  • Legeros first photo approximately 20 minutes after dispatch, took about 2,000 pictures.


  • 10:03 p.m. – Dispatched
  • 10:05 p.m. – Working fire dispatched.
  • 10:05 p.m. – First unit arrives, Engine 13, response time of 57 seconds.
  • 10:06 p.m. – Second alarm requested (E13) and dispatched. EMS also requests second alarm at same time.
  • 10:08 p.m. – Third alarm requested (E13) and dispatched.
  • 10:12 p.m. – Fourth alarm requested (B3) and dispatched.
  • 10:19 p.m. – Tower crane collapsed.
  • 10:28 p.m. – Calls for Methodist Adult Center on fire, Edenton and Dawson.
  • 10:32 p.m. – Calls for Sacred Heart Cathedral on fire at 200 Hillsborough Street, due to embers.
  • 10:32 p.m. – Fifth alarm dispatched.
  • 11:01 p.m. – Incident at Quorum Building under control.
  • 11:17 p.m. – Incident at Links Building under control.
  • 1:10 a.m. – Main fire building under control.

Command locations:

  • Fire at Jones and Harrington, initial
  • Fire at Harrington, south of Jones, second location
  • EMS at Harrington, south of Jones, next to fire
  • Police in parking lot, west side of Harrington, between Jones and Edenton

Staging locations:

  • Fire included West Street at Jones (42nd Street), then Glenwood Avenue.
  • EMS at two locations: GSA/Fleet Services for units arriving from south, Broughton High School from north and west.

Rehab locations:

  • A/B corner, for temporary
  • Jones and West, at 42nd Street, for permanent

Link Apartments

  • Exterior heat/fire damage
  • Windows broken on many floors
  • Minor interior heat damage, melted blinds, etc.

Quorum Building

  • Exterior heat/fire damage
  • Minimal fire damage on a couple floors
  • Sprinkler damage on some floors
  • Windows broken on many floors
  • Water damage on some floors

Ten hydrants used, plus one dry hydrant:

  1. Jones just north of Harrington, NE corner
    • Used briefly (?).
  2. Jones and Dawson, NW corner
    • Engine 1, supplying blitz monitor. Then used by Ladder 7.
  3. Jones, north side, halfway between Dawson and Harrington
  4. Jones and West, SE corner
    • Engine 2 (reserve), supplying Ladder 4 (reserve)
  5. North and West, NE corner
    • Engine 9 (#1 of 2)
  6. Harrington, east side at end of North
    • Squad 14, supplying Engine 9 (#2 of 2)
  7. Harrington, east side, just north of Edenton
  8. Harrington, between Jones and Edenton
    • Squad 7, connected to Quorum FDC.
  9. Harrington and Lane
    • Ladder 2, connected but hydrant dry (not functioning).
  10. West, east side, just north of Jones
    • Engine 15, connected to Links FDC. 

Pumping engines included:

  • Engine 1
    • First location: Jones just east of Dawson, no connections or pumping (correct/)
    • Second location: Jones just west of Dawson, connected to hydrant at intersection, supplying blitzing monitor, and booster reel (to extinguish fire impinging on hose line).
  • Engine 2
    • Jones and West, at hydrant, supplying Ladder 4.
  • Engine 3 (using reserve)
    • Jones and West, at hydrant, supplying… ?
  • Engine 9
    • Harrington, just south of Lane, in parking lot on west side of Harrington.
    • Connected to hydrants from North and West, and also supplied by Squad 14.
  • Squad 7
    • Harrington, just south of West, connected to hydrant (where?).
    • Spplying Quorum Building FDC.
  • Squad 14
    • Harrington, at dead end of North, at hydrant.
    • Supplying Engine 9.
  • Engine 11
    • Dawson, south of Jones, connected to hydrant (where?).
    • Supplying… ?
  • Engine 15
    • West, just north of Jones, at hydrant.
    • Supplying Link Apartments FDC.
  • Engine 13
    • First location:
      • Jones, south side, halfway between Harrington and Dawson, at hydrant.
      • Supplying hand lines or…
    • Later location:
      • Dawson, halfway between Lane and Jones, alley between buildings on west side of Dawson, connected to hydrant at…?
      • Supplying Ladder 2.

Five aerials used:

  • Ladder 2
    • First location – Harrington at Lane, facing south.
    • Second location – Alley between B5 and B7, facing east.
  • Ladder 3
    • Harrington at Jones, facing north.
  • Ladder 4
    • First location – Jones west of Harrington, facing west.
    • Second location – Jones at Harrington, still facing west (using reserve Snorkel)
  • Ladder 7
    • First location – Dawson at Jones, facing north.
    • Second location – Jones Street midway between Harrington and Dawson, facing west.
  • Ladder 8
    • Alley between B1 and B7, facing south.

Buildings in diagram:

  • B1 – Fire building, destroyed.
    • 314 W. Jones – Metropolitan Apartments – 5 stories – 274,959 (?) square-feet over nearly two acres. Apartments.
    • Fire building, most of structure destroyed.
    • Under construction, built primarily of wood. Had been inspected 50 times to date, including the Monday before the fire. Was up to code and passed each inspection. [WRAL] $50 million project, was scheduled to open in early fall. [WTVD] Loss estimated at over $12M. [WTVD]
  • B2 – Tower crane collapsed atop structure.
    • 201 W. Harrington – Warehouse – 1 story – 5,356 square-feet, built 1967. Warehouse.
  • B3 – Fire exposure, exterior damage, windows blown out.
    • 414 W. Jones – Link Apartments – 6 stories, 139,445 square-feet, built 2015. Apartments.
  • B4 – Fire exposure, exterior damage, windows blown out, some fire damage to interior, sprinklers activated, also water damage.
    • 323 W. Jones – Quorum Center – 15 stories, 317,521 square-feet, built 2006. Mixed use.
  • B5 – Fire exposure, upper story/stories room and contents burned.
    • 308 W. Jones – League of Municipalities – 5 stories, 32,551 square-feet, built 1997. Offices.
      Damage to five floors. [WRAL]
  • B6 – Fire on roof, also landscaping materials burned.
    • 300 W. Jones – League of Municipalities – 1 story, 4,136 square-feet, built 1986. Offices.
  • B7 – Fire exposure, landscaping, exterior, and some room and contents burned. 
    • 215 N. Dawson – Albert Coats Building, NCLofM – 1 story, 24,279 square-feet, built 1979. Offices.
  • B8 – Fire exposure, landscaping, roof, and penetration to interior.
    • 301 W. Jones – Youth Center – 2 stories, 9,408 square-feet, built 1980. School.
    • Heavy water damage, heavy odor from fire, where it entered through roll-up doors to gymnasium. Embers burned holes in the roof, which led to extensive water damage. [WRAL]
    • Damage $150,000. [WTVD]
  • B9 – Pine straw ignited along foundation, also small fire on roof. 
    • 228 W. Edenton – Edenton Street Methodist Church – 3 stories, 87,348 square-feet, built 1959. Church.
    • Some roof damage, landscaping burned.

Also impacted:

  • 2 W. Edenton – Department of Agriculture
    • Cracked windows. [WRAL]
  • 217 W. Jones – Department Environmental Quality
    • Heavy smoke, lost power. [WRAL]

Displaced residents:

  • Red Cross assisted about 40 people who needed place to stay. [WRAL]
  • Hampton Inn at Glenwood South and on Hillsborough Street, and Holiday Inn on Hillsborough Street also hosted evacuees. [WRAL]
  • Raleigh Chamber made their office available Friday, for displaced business owners and leaders who needed a “downtown base of operations.” [WNCN]

Canteen service:

  • Barry’s Cafe, went to scene around 12:30 a.m. [WNCN]
  • Edenton Street UMC members went to scene Friday morning, handed out food and coffee. [WNCN]
  • Local restaurants went to scene the next day, and handed out food:
    • Daily Planet Cafe – Pastries and Coffee [WNCN]
    • Panera Bread – Pastries and Coffee [WNCN]
    • Chick-fil-A downtown location – Gave food until 3:00 p.m. [WNCN]
  • More Kitchen and Wine Bar on West Street – Closed Friday and Saturday, and provided food to responders on Friday. [WNCN]
  • Other local restaurants offered free food to responders in uniform.
    • Jersey Mike’s on Wake Forest Road, Peace Street, Hillsborough Street [WNCN]
    • Flying Biscuit Cafe, free food for responders on Saturday. [WNCN]


  • Raleigh fire
  • Raleigh police
  • State Bureau of Investigation
  • Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives
    • Including national response team
    • “Team consisting of certified fire investigators, forensic mapping specialists, canine teams, electrical engineers and forensic chemists” is expected to arrive Saturday. [WNCN]
  • Fire appeared to have ignored on the second floor. [WTVD]

Notes From Radio Traffic

These are temporary, until a better-constructed timeline is created here. Source is this YouTube posted recording:

  • After first alarm at 10:03 p.m.
    • Channel Tac 18.
    • Dispatch advising working fire, due to multiple calls, transmitted immediately after dispatch.
  • After second alarm at 10:06 p.m.
    • Was requested on arrival of Engine 13.
    • Fire showing from Division 2.
    • Staging set at 42nd Street Oyster Bar.
    • All EMS units moved to Tac 19.
    • Command to third-arriving engine, begin evacuating those apartments.
  • After third alarm at 10:08 p.m.
    • Was requested by Engine 13.
    • “Fire walking from one end of the block to the end.”
    • Need to start evacuating apartments at intersection.
    • Second alarm for EMS requested immediately after fire requested second alarm.
    • Also, working fire inside D1 exposure.
    • Battalion 3, en route, to all ladders, try to set up in the corners of the structure.
    • Battalion 3, en route, this will be 100% defensive.
    • Command to HQ, notify public works to boost pressure for this area.
    • Battalion 3 arrives.
    • Command advises fire inside three-story exposure on Delta side, need to make entry.
  • After fourth alarm at 10:12 p.m.
    • Was requested by Battalion 3, at same time he assumed command.
    • He’s located at Jones & Harrington.
    • Fourth alarm to earlier staging area.
    • Building 30% involved at that time.
    • Requesting RPD to shut down all traffic within two blocks on all sides.
    • No traffic allowed in, except emergency vehicles.
    • Car 20, en route, advises that a sky crane is involved.
    • Command to Battalion 2, take C division.
    • “This one’s going to come down so. We are not going to be able to control this fire. We are going to have to protect exposures.”
    • Command to Engine 5, pull off blitz nozzle, to protect Quorum Building.
    • Command to Ladder 7, go to C/D corner.
    • Command to Ladder 2, go to B/C corner.
    • Completely defensive, protect exposures.
    • Ladder 3 arrives at A/D corner.
  • At 08:40 on recording.
    • “Cranes coming down”.
    • E20 officer to command, glass falling on Jones Street.
    • Car 2 assuming command, large crane has come down, we’re going to do a par (of units in that vicinity).
    • Command to all units entering the city, stage behind Station 1.
  • At 10:48 on recording.
    • Command requests two engines and one ladder to Quorum, report of subjects trapped.
    • Tac channel requested for staging.
  • At 12:10 on recording.
    • Command to HQ, need five more channels.
    • Tac 22 in staging.
    • Car 401 is staging officer.
  • At 13:35 on recording
    • Command to HQ, we have another incident at the Quorum, a high-rise fire, Tac 19, Battalion 3 is command.
    • One hydrant out of service, reports one unit.
    • Five additional engines needed at Quorum building.
    • EMS staging moved to Tac 27.
    • Roll call requested of units.
    • Quorum Building is “high-rise exposure with fire inside.”
  • At 17:58 on recording
    • HQ to command, getting report of church on fire at McDowell and Hillsborough.
  • At 20:42 on recording
    • Command to all units, any extra bodies report to command post, to the staging officer, on Tac 22.
    • Unit reports little fire on the roof of a building, has been extinguished.
  • At 21:46 on recording
    • Command to HQ, have another building that needs to be checked, 228 W. Edenton.
  • Fire controlled at 1:10 p.m.

March 18
Let’s add some news and media links…

Audio, Video, Photos, News Stories

Audio – Dispatch Traffic – 45 minutes

Video – YouTube

Photo Albums


News & Observer


Time Warner


Main Page – Start here, long list story links


Stories tagged – See this page


March 17
Five alarms were struck last night, at 400 West North Street in downtown Raleigh. Largest  downtown fire in decades. Lots to report.

Run Card

Let’s start with a run card, including other structure fires dispatched through 8:00 a.m. 

Big thanks to Carl Thompson, for compiling most of this information!

First Alarm – 10:03 p.m.

RFD Car 420
28 personnel

EMS 11

Working Fire – 10:05 p.m.

RFD Car 401
RFD Car 20
RFD Air 1

EMS Truck 1

Second Alarm – ~10:06 p.m.


EMS 13
EMS Medic 92
EMS 18
EMS 10
EMS 19

Third Alarm – 10:08 p.m.

RFD Sq14

Fourth Alarm – 10:12 p.m.


Fifth Alarm – 10:32 p.m.


EMS 38
EMS 22

Command Staff

RFD C3 (at EOC)
RFD Deputy Chief of Training
RFD Fire Protection Engineer
RFD Safety Officer

Special Called

RFD L8 – ~12:10 a.m.
RFD Air 2 – ~03:29 a.m.
RFD E110 (reserve)
RFD Training Engine 1 – Staffed with four people, two training staff and two recruits who already have FF certifications. Stood by at scene.
RFD Training Engine 2 – See above
RFD commercial bus – Training staff, Recruit Academy instructors, and ~20 recruits. Recruits used for “anything and everything” on scene.

EMS EVAC1 – Staged at Public Safety Center

Two CAT busses for displaced residents and rehab

Special Assigned

RFD E106 – Reserve in service, as E126 in CAD
RFD E221 – Reserve in service
RFD L111 – Reserve in service
RFD L125 – Reserve in service, as L210 in CAD


Unit Station Time Calls (Approx)


Sta 2

~11:46 p.m.  


Sta 9

~11:32 p.m.  


Sta 7

~11:32 p.m.  


Sta 8

~11:10 p.m.  


Sta 1

~11:03 p.m.  


Sta 9

~10:38 p.m.  


Sta 17

~11:27 p.m.  
RFD E5 Sta 12 ~06:55 a.m.  
RFD E221 (reserve) Sta 12    
RFD E106 (reserve),
as E126 in CAD
Sta 26    
RFD L125,
as L210 in CAD
Sta 11    

Apex E5

Sta 17


Bay Leaf P367

Sta 18


Cary E1, L1

Sta 1


Cary E5, E6, B2

Sta 9


Cary E5

Sta 10, after Sta 9


Durham Highway 174

Sta 6, then Sta 29


Eastern Wake R11

Sta 12


Fairview E3

Sta 1


Garner E4

Sta 10


Holly Springs E1

Sta 3


Rolesville E151

Sta 12


Stony Hill P261

Sta 7


Swift Creek E1

Sta 5


Wake Forest E2

Sta 11


Wake Forest E5

Sta 25


Wendell E113

Sta 15, after reporting to Sta 19


Western Wake P196

Sta 8, then Sta 14


Zebulon L95

Sta 11


Other Structure Fire Calls Dispatched During The Fire

Structure Fire – N. McDowell St. & Hillsborough – ~10:37 p.m.

Report of embers smoking on roof.

EMS 62

Structure Fire – 104 Hillsborough St. – ~10:55 p.m.

Need details.


Structure fire – 214 N. Harrington – ~4:52 a.m.

Need details.

RFD L1 (added)

Structure fire – 2804 Barwell Road – ~06:44 p.m.

Single-family dwelling, working fire.


Working fire – 2804 Barwell Road – ~06:48 a.m.

RFD Car 20
RFD Car 401
RFD Air 2

Facebook Comments


  1. Mike, were any fire apparatus damaged by the heat or falling debris? Also great job RFD , listened to the radio traffic,Command and all involved performed outstanding. Everybody went home and no loss of life, hope the firefighter with the injury is doing OK. Mike, awesome photos and you did one heck of a job putting together the blog post as well.

    • Engine 13 sustained some heat damage, including many light lenses. Heard their hose cover was damaged, and some sections of hose. Also some equipment inside a compartment. They pulled their booster line, to cool the engine. Ladder 4, on reserve, had some melting of a lightbar, on the back.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.