Fire gutted this downtown building located at 213 N. Main St., on Saturday morning. Fire crews were called at approximately 3:41 a.m. and were there throughout the morning. The three-story structure used to house apartments, but was vacant at the time of the blaze, according to the Findlay Fire Department. (Photos by Jamie Baker)

An old apartment building on Findlay’s North Main Street — one that survived an earlier fire in 2005 and a neighboring fire in 2016 — burned early Saturday.

Findlay firefighters were called at 3:41 a.m. to 213 N. Main St., according to Findlay Fire Battalion Chief Matt Traver. Fifteen firefighters responded, with some fire visible on the second floor of the building and smoke visible on the second and third floors.

A second alarm was requested at 3:51 a.m., with 14 more firefighters responding, Traver said. Firefighters took up a defensive position, and the fire was reported to be under control around 7 a.m.

A search of the building, which was vacant at the time of the fire, confirmed that no one was inside, firefighters said. The last crews left the scene around 3:30 p.m., Traver said.

Heavy damage was reported on the second and third floors of the building, including some partial floor collapses, Traver said, adding that the roof of the building remained intact.

Surrounding streets, including North Main and Center streets, Meeks Avenue and Clinton Court, were closed Saturday morning due to firefighting activities, but later reopened.

The cause of the fire and where it started are not yet known, Traver said. Fire investigators were onsite Saturday afternoon to conduct their investigation.

The Findlay Police Department, Hanco EMS, Findlay Street Department, Findlay Water and Sewer Department, and the American Red Cross-North Central Ohio Chapter all responded to the scene.

Bright Image Auto Detailing assisted as a staging and warming area for firefighters and the Red Cross.

According to the Hancock County auditor’s website, the building is owned by Findlay North Main Street LLC.

The fire-damaged building is the only one left standing on the east side of North Main Street between the Blanchard River and Center Street.

Other buildings on that side of Main Street have burned, or were heavily damaged by the 2007 flood and later torn down.

The apartment building was previously damaged by fire in January 2005, forcing residents of 12 apartments out of their homes. That fire was contained to one apartment, and most residents were allowed back into their residences the next day.

In January 2016, a big fire destroyed a business and apartment building at 217-227 N. Main St., just north of the building that burned Saturday. The buildings damaged in the 2016 fire were later torn down.

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