FORT MYERS, Fla. - The State Fire Marshall says a fire at a fraternity house in Fort Myers was accidental, and likely electrical in nature.
Two firefighters were injured while battling the massive blaze at 2746 Blake Street.
Battalion Chief Dave Tilton with the Fort Myers Fire Department said one firefighter is in the ICU with broken ribs and a clavicle injury, while the other suffered a hip fracture and some bumps and bruises. The fire department has identified to the two injured as Tony Price and Shane Remy. Price is listed in fair condition, while Remy is listed in good condition.
Flames shot through the roof before it collapsed and fell on the firefighters.
WINK News anchor Haley Hinds said she saw part of the roof collapse on Price and Remy. Other firefighters started yelling and grabbing piece of wood, trying to lift them off.
Firefighters credit Tony Price's helmet with saving his life.
Ambulances rushed two firefighters to Lee Memorial Hospital. Tilton said their protective gear helped keep saved their lives.
Tilton says it took extra time to fight the fire because they all stopped to assist the injured firefighters.
"The brim of the helmet landed on a large boulder, a decorative rock and the wall came down on this side and the helmet actually protected his head from being crushed," said Tony Burik, a fellow firefighter.
A member of the fraternity Omega Phi Psi tells WINK News the house is owned by the fraternity and members were meeting there last night. There was a security guard living on the property who escape unharmed, according to Fort Myers firefighters.
Right now, the fire department says it doesn't know what sparked the fire, but the building is a total loss. The fire marshal is investigating to determine the cause.
Tilton said this fire ranks in his "top 20" worst fires in Fort Myers.
According to Tilton, Price won Firefighter of the Year in 2012, after he saved a man's life in the Florida Keys.
Remy has been with the department for five years.