Fire causes $100K worth of damage at Indianapolis church

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — A fire caused $100,000 worth of damage at a church on the near northwest side of Indianapolis, according to the Indianapolis Fire Department.

Around 11:15 a.m. Sunday, firefighters were called to Bethany Rembrandt Church of God Sanctified at 908 Edgemont Avenue in response to a fire.

IFD says 10 to 20 adults were gathered inside the church for an adult Sunday school class. The occupants told authorities they noticed a smell inside the building but thought it might have been coming from the church’s furnace, which was turned on for the first time Saturday, or from the kitchen, where food was cooking. Once smoke began to appear in the sanctuary, the occupants evacuated the church and called 911.

Once outside, they noticed heavy smoke coming from the roof gables. No one was injured in the incident.

Firefighters were able to get the fire under control shortly after they arrived on scene.

The fire traveled the length of the roof and burned through the roof ridge beam, which compromised the structural integrity of the trusses, IFD says. The eastern wall of the church was pushed about six inches away from the structure. By 12:30 p.m., the entire length of the roof collapsed.

IFD says there were working smoke alarms inside the building, but none of the were activated.

An investigation into the fire is ongoing.

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