Fire engulfs Fox Elementary School; early warning may have gone unheeded | Richmond Local News

A large fire broke out at Fox Elementary School late Friday night, causing extensive damage to the building, located in Richmond’s fan district.

The Richmond Fire Department responded to the call at 2300 Hanover Avenue as flames engulfed the school. Built in 1911, the school has about 350 students, according to state figures reported in the fall.

The Richmond Fire Department worked to extinguish the flames on all sides until about 1 a.m. when the blaze was largely contained. The teams stayed put.

Much of the top floor and the roof of the school were destroyed or damaged.

Jason Kamras, Superintendent of Richmond Public Schools, tweeted at 11:30 p.m.: “Heartbroken to share that Fox ES is on fire. I am on site with Principal Jacobs. RFD is doing their best to contain it. I I will share more information once I have it. Please keep the Fox community in your prayers tonight.

An investigation will take place, but information obtained by the Richmond Times-Dispatch suggests the first alarm may not have triggered an appropriate response.

At 9:29 p.m. the first call was made to the fire department, but after visiting the school they reported seeing nothing unusual through the windows.

As it was out of school hours, calls were made to the alarm company and RPS to gain access to the building, but no access was granted as a result of these calls.

At 10:09 p.m., according to calls from dispatch, those firefighters left the scene, unable to identify anything of concern.

Around 26 minutes later, flames were visible from the outside and the call went out for firefighters to battle what eventually became a major blaze.

The Richmond Times-Dispatch will have continuing updates on fire and building rescue efforts throughout the day on Saturday.

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