A fire at what is known as the old Russo building at 3031 S. Branch Ave. kept Altoona firefighters busy Saturday.
Altoona firefighters were called out at 5:53 a.m. for a blaze at the building, which has been vacant for many years, and remained on the scene until 4:15 p.m., said Assistant Chief Steve Michelone.
Since the building has not had any utilities for several years, the fire was likely set, Michelone said.
View a clip of the Russo Salvage fire on Saturday
"When we arrived found light smoke coming out of various openings in the roof and windows. Our crews on the scene let the roof at the rear of the building burn off then they were able to apply water via an aerial ladder truck," Michelone said.
Because the building is in such bad shape, city firefighters are not allowed to enter the building, Michelone said.
"The building is worth little to nothing. The building is a hazard, and it would take hundreds of thousands of dollars to demolish. There was nothing to save," Michelone said.
firefighters watch the Russo Salvage on 31st Street in Altoona burn on Saturday afternoon. Firefighters were called out at 5:53 a.m. and were on scene until 4:15 p.m., Assistant Chief Steve Michelone said.
Thirty-first Street between Sixth Avenue and Beale Avenue will remain closed until city engineering crews have a chance to evaluate the building, Michelone said.