Smoke from 3-alarm warehouse fire over Richmond

Posted at 11:18 PM, Nov 01, 2014
and last updated 2014-11-02 11:06:07-05

RICHMOND, Va. — Richmond fire crews were called to a three-alarm warehouse fire in South Richmond.

Guillermo Colon who is a resident in the area described the fireball near his home.

"I thought it was a chemical explosion at first," Colon said.

His son Malachi Johnson recorded the massive fire on his phone.

"Hope to God everything is okay," he said.  "I wouldn't want to see anyone in this predicament."

Plumes of thick black smoke could be seen for miles coming from River City Recycling on Gordon Avenue.

Fire officials said it started as a two-alarm, but it quickly turned into a three-alarm fire.

"We had the full roof collapse of the initial building," Richmond Fire spokesperson Lt. Christopher Armstrong said.  "Some of the walls came down as well.  No one was hurt.  No one was inside."

Plastic bottles inside the warehouse were to blame.

It took firefighters several hours to control the flames and the hot spots.

It will take hundreds of thousands of dollars to rebuild after the severe damage.

The tips started to come in via Twitter at about 8 a.m.