Thursday, July 30, 7:30 p.m.: Firefighters battled difficult conditions during a fire in a vacant building in Flanders Thursday afternoon, according to Flanders Chief Todd Ryan.
Firefighters had trouble accessing the building, located on the corner of Flanders Road and Long Neck Boulevard. The steel roll-down doors in front of the former Bayview Market could not be opened even after bolt cutters were used to cut the locks off. There were interior locks on the doors, as well, the chief said. Steel bars on the windows, on the side of the building, made them impassable too.
While firefighters used a rotary saw to cut out an access in the steel doors, others were able to go into the building through a small side door toward the back of the building, which is where the fire appears to have begun, Chief Ryan said.
Once most of the fire was knocked down, they cut holes in the roof to ventilate the building.
“It was heavy damage on the back third of the building,” he said. There was heavy smoke damage throughout the rest of the property.
The fire chief said they called in assistance from Hampton Bays and East Quogue Fire Departments so they could rotate firefighters who were working in extreme heat conditions. It was not only the temperatures outside, but the lack of ventilation inside the building.
“All the F.D.s worked awesome together,” Chief Ryan said. “We thank them.”
After the fire was out, one firefighter was injured as he helped pack up equipment. The firefighters was taken to Peconic Bay Medical Center in Riverhead with a possibly torn bicep. He was treated and released.
The Southampton Town Fire Marshal’s office was still on scene investigating the cause on Monday evening.
Thursday, July 30, 3:30 p.m.: Smoke billowed from a vacant Flanders building Thursday afternoon. The fire in the building, formerly the Bayview Market on the corner of Long Neck Boulevard and Flanders Road, across from the USA gas station, was reported by passersby at about 3 p.m.
Heavy smoke could be seen coming from the eaves. A home behind the building was evacuated. The fire was quickly knocked down once firefighters were able to make entry into the building, which is at the beginning of the Bay View Pines neighborhood.
A Flanders Fire Department chief used bolt cutters to get in through the front of the building, which had metal garage bay doors over the glass windows. Firefighters cut holes in the roof to vent the smoke from the building.
Chiefs requested assistance from the Hampton Bays and Riverhead Fire Departments. The Flanders Northampton Volunteer Ambulance Corps and the Hampton Bays ambulance were on scene, as well.
The Southampton Town fire marshal’s office was investigating the cause, and appeared to be focused on the back of the building.
The Bay View Pines deli has been closed at least five years. Neighbors said the building has been used as a deli on and off since the 1970s.
Long Neck Blvd was closed to traffic. Flanders Road was initially kept open to one lane of traffic, but then closed altogether.
This article will be updated when more information is available.