Fire destroys building at Broadview and Gerrard

An early morning fire has destroyed a building at the corner of Broadview Avenue and Gerrard Street East.
The fire closed down the busy intersection of Broadview Avenue and Gerrard Street East. (Michael Cole/CBC)

Toronto firefighters have put out a fire in a building at the corner of Broadview Avenue and Gerrard Street East. 

The fire broke out around 5 a.m. and soon escalated into a four-alarm fire. 

A TTC streetcar is unable to move after power was cut to overhead wires as a safety measure. (Submitted by Finn Webb)

At its height about 70 firefighters were called in to contain the fire.

"We had fire coming out three windows on the second and third floor at the north side of the building, then it started coming out the windows on the west side," said Division Commander Bob O'Hallarn.

All of the people living in the apartments in the building got out safely.  Two firefighters were taken to hospital with minor injuries.

Richard Sawyers was one of the residents forced to flee from an adjoining building.

"I woke up and I went over looked at my window, turned the air conditioner off and I could see the flames coming out of that window," he said.

Neighbours say they heard a few explosions.

Sawyers waited until the afternoon before being allowed back into his apartment to retrieve some clothes and his wallet.

Part of the building collapsed at one point.

The fire has disrupted streetcar service on the 504, 505 and 506 routes. The TTC is warning that it could take some time to get service back to normal.  In the meantime it's running shuttle buses and diverting some of its streetcars.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.