A 13-year-old boy and a police officer were hospitalized after a second alarm fire and explosion at an apartment building in Zion Monday evening.
The Zion Fire-Rescue Department and Zion Police Department responded around 9:35 p.m. Monday to the 1700 block of Joppa Avenue for a report of a shooting.
Officers arrived and learned that there were no shots fired but instead a fire on the second floor of a multi-unit apartment building, Zion Fire-Rescue Department Battalion Chief Justin Stried said.
A police officer who suffered smoke inhalation and a 13-year-old boy who suffered burns to his hands, chest and face were transported by ambulance to area hospitals, Stried said.
The Mutual Aid Box Alarm System (MABAS) was utilized and upgraded to the second alarm, bringing firefighters from over a dozen fire departments in Lake County and Kenosha County.
Heavy smoke and fire damage occurred inside the building from the fire, Stried said, adding that the fire remains under investigation.
“As with any fire situation, it is imperative that you make sure you have working smoke detectors in your residence – that detail could truly be the difference between life or death in a fire situation, especially at night when you are sleeping,” Stried said.
Fire crews remained on scene for three hours. Seven families were temporarily displaced because water in the building had to be shut off and due to smoke damage, fire officials said.