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Explosion and Scaffold Collapse at BGE Building in Baltimore

By MICHAEL SCHWARTZBERG, Senior Correspondent | December 23, 2020 | MARYLAND

Story No. 010221101

Shortly before 830am on Wednesday, December 23, 2020, Baltimore City 911 dispatchers began receiving multiple calls reporting an explosion in the downtown area. The Fire Communications Bureau directed responding units, including Rescue 1 and Squad 26 from the Baltimore City Fire Department’s Special Rescue Operations Team, to the BGE hi-rise office building in the 100 block of West Fayette Street at the Charles Center complex. First-arriving BCFD units reported injured people at the ground level, injured window-washers clinging to safety lines 12 stories in the air, and an active fire on the 16th floor. Firefighters discovered significant damage to the building’s roof and multiple additional injured victims, and command requested a second alarm. Firefighters extinguished the fire and SRO crews removed several windows to access and rescue the workers. BCFD utilized 11 EMS units on the call; 21 people were treated for injuries, with 19 being transported to area hospitals, with conditions ranging from critical to non-life-threatening. Additional responding agencies included Baltimore City Police, Baltimore City Office of Emergency Management and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

This article is a direct street report from our correspondent and has not been edited by the 1st Responder newsroom.