A fire has broken out in Kimberley’s iconic Platzl and firefighters are on scene now trying to prevent the flames from spreading to nearby buildings.
The fire started in the basement of the Kootenay Cycle Works, witnesses say. Nearby businesses and restaurants have been evacuated and RCMP have been called in to assist in crowd control.
The fire began at 5:47 p.m. and is contained to the Kootenay Cycle Works building, RCMP say. Eighteen fire fighters are on scene and no injuries have been reported. An ambulance is on standby at the scene.
The fire fighters will remain on scene through the night to ensure there are no flare ups. RCMP say the brick structure is still standing, however the interior of the building is completely gutted. The Gilded Goat remains standing, and so far has only smoke and water damage.
The RCMP are asking residents to stay away from the scene, however a small group of residents and owners of the effected businesses have gathered outside the evacuation area.
There is heavy smoke in the downtown core which is a significant health risk. RCMP say the owner of Kootenay Cycle Works was in the building when the fire started. Witnesses say it is believed to have begun in the basement. The cause of the fire is under investigation.
The Bulletin was on the scene this evening and will be providing updates on this story as it develops. See Monday’s Townsman and Bulletin for more on this story.