The historic Capitol Building in Washington has been engulfed in flames, prompting officials to shut down the building for several hours to restore power to buildings and staff, US Capitol Police said on Monday.
“There is a substantial fire at the Capitol building, and as of right now, no one is under threat,” Capitol Police Chief Robert Meller said at a news conference.
“We have determined that the building is structurally sound and safe to reopen.”‘
It’s all coming down’ Capitol fire: firefighter US Capitol Firefighter Robert Matera said on Saturday that the flames were coming down around the perimeter of the building and that the structure was completely engulfed.
“It’s like a tornado,” Matero said.
“It’s a huge, massive fire.”
Washington Mayor Muriel Bowser said that all buildings at the US Capitol were under “total lockdown”.
“All of our buildings, including the American Legislative Exchange Council, are under total lockdown,” Bowser said in a statement.
“This is a safety and security issue for the Capitol, and I have directed my Office of Emergency Management to assist all employees in the event that any buildings or equipment are threatened or needed to protect the Capitol or its occupants.”
The Capitol, which was the first federal building to be built in the US, was designed by architect Alexander Hamilton in 1792 and was named for the former governor of New York, Alexander Hamilton.
It was the site of the first Constitutional Convention in 1787.
In recent years, the building has been plagued by high-profile safety problems, including a series of fires last year that were blamed on faulty wiring and faulty ceiling panels.
A fire broke out on Saturday in the building’s basement, destroying two columns, according to an Associated Press reporter.
The Washington Fire Department, which responded to the fire, said it was unable to determine the cause of the fire.
Matera, who said the building was on fire at about 3:00am local time, said the fire was contained and there was no threat to anyone.
“I think it’s a good thing that the Capitol has been evacuated,” he said.
Officials said that a helicopter was dispatched to the Capitol and that a fire department ambulance was also on the scene.”
I think we’re all looking forward to getting back to work.”
Officials said that a helicopter was dispatched to the Capitol and that a fire department ambulance was also on the scene.
No one was hurt.