2 workers missing after massive fire at North Carolina construction site

Crews are fighting a large fire in the Southpark area of Charlotte. Credit: Sophie Mueller
Published: May. 18, 2023 at 9:49 AM CDT|Updated: May. 18, 2023 at 6:26 PM CDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV/Gray News) – Firefighters rescued 15 workers while two remain unaccounted for after a massive fire broke out at a south Charlotte construction site Thursday morning, officials said.

According to Charlotte Fire, firefighters ers were called to a construction site in the area of South Park Mall.

Charlotte Fire Chief Reginald Johnson said over 90 firefighters responded after several calls began coming in at 9 a.m. Ultimately, five alarms were called.

The fire is at a construction site in south Charlotte, according to firefighters.

Johnson said one of those rescued was a crane operator who had minor injuries. He added the construction foreman confirmed the two unaccounted-for workers.

Medic said paramedics remain on the scene and continue to provide support to firefighters.

According to the chief, it was a fast-moving fire that climbed to temperatures well over 2,000 degrees.

“The fire moved very rapidly,” Johnson said.

Johnson said there were a number of nearby rooftop fires due to the embers and the size and volume of the construction site fire.

He added that a number of investigators will determine the cause of the fire.

Alex Eyssen, Mill Creek’s Senior Management Director - Carolinas, the company building for the apartments that caught fire issued a statement to WBTV.

“As was recently confirmed by the Charlotte Fire Department, two people working onsite are currently unaccounted for and several were rescued with some being transported to the hospital. We are deeply concerned for their wellbeing and will continue to follow the direction of the first responders on site to address the situation. Our thoughts are with the missing and injured individuals, and their loved ones at this time.

We are extremely grateful for the quick and thorough response of the first responders with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department and the Charlotte Fire Department who risked their lives for others and to contain the fire as quickly as possible. Their response was nothing short of heroic, and we thank them for all that they do every day. We are also thankful for the assistance of City Councilmember Tariq Bokhari,” Eyssen said.