A condemned apartment building containing asbestos was destroyed in a fire Tuesday morning in Rock Hill.
Before demolishing the burned building - one of eight awaiting demolition at the Midtown Apartments in Rock Hill - city officials must first find out if additional precautions are necessary.
If the building is no longer structurally sound, an inspector might not be able to enter to determine which materials contain asbestos and need to be removed separately, said Adam Myrick, a spokesman with the state Department of Health and Environmental Control.
Otherwise, he said, no measures other than those normally required in asbestos removal are necessary.
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Fire crews were called to the vacant Midtown Apartments on Rauch Street around 2:45 a.m. Tuesday.
One of the buildings suffered extensive damage, said Battalion Chief Mark Simmons with the Rock Hill Fire Department.
No one was injured. A Rock Hill police report lists the damage to the unoccupied building at $70,000.
The fire started on the left side of the building in one of the vacant apartments, said Fire Capt. Rusty Myers. No cause has been discovered.
"We're going to end up listing the cause of this fire as undetermined," Myers said.
It took firefighters just 30 minutes to contain the fire, although crews stayed on the scene for several hours.
City officials decided in November to level the 96-unit complex, three buildings at a time, during the next several months.
About a month ago, officials were called to the apartments three times in one weekend to fight brush fires. It appeared that brush and debris had been intentionally set on fire three separate times during a late January weekend, according to Rock Hill Police reports.
Nothing of value was reported damaged in those fires.
Letting the building burn to the ground would have been "bad customer service" given the fire hazard, said Katie Quinn, a city spokeswoman.
Five buildings at the site have already been demolished and another will come down Thursday, Quinn said.
The burned building was the last one scheduled for demolition, she said, and the fire should not affect the demolition timeline.