KBTX | Bryan & College Station, TX | News, Weather, Sports

Massive Blaze Destroys Downtown Bryan Saddlery

Flames and heavy smoke filled the air in Downtown Bryan Sunday and power was out in the area as crews fought the blaze near Main and 22nd Streets.

Huge clouds of smoke could be seen for miles in Bryan as flames fully engulfed a the Court's Saddlery Building.

The massive fire broke out around 4:45 P.M. Sunday and firefighters entered the structure briefly but had to fall back because of concerns the roof would collapse.

News 3 spoke with several members of the Court family who'd had their business in Bryan since 1956.

While no one was injured, the family has now lost their livelihood.

Flames and smoke billowed out of control Sunday afternoon in Downtown Bryan reducing the Court's Saddlery store to ashes.

More than 40 firefighters from Bryan and College Station battled the blaze which turned the normally quiet downtown into a disaster area as smoke reduced visibility to zero at times along Main Street and caused transformers to spark.

David Hodges was leaving his house when he saw the blaze from afar.

"Seen the smoke crossing the track and so we came up. Seen the cars that were blocked off so we went down to Sims, tried to go around it that it was the Varisco Building at first but it was Old Court's Saddlery's burning," said David Hodges of Bryan.

"It's a very significant fire, very disappointing, for the Court family, they've been in business here for a long time in Downtown Bryan and the building seems to be a loss at this point," said Bryan Mayor Jason Bienski.

Crews continued to work late in to the night leaving firefighters frustrated because more couldn't be done.

"When the fire crews arrived they had heavy fire involvement up in the attic area. They originally tried to get inside the building to extinguish the fire and the roof and the ceiling area began to collapse on the firefighters so they had to come out," said Bryan Fire Chief Mike Donoho.

Chief Donoho said no one was believed to be inside when the fire started because the business was closed

"We really would have liked to have got in and put this fire out to save the building but you can see behind me the entire structure is beginning to collapse and we've poured thousands and thousands of gallons on this that you could contain it and make sure it doesn't spread to other areas but it is extremely frustrating I feel like we're standing out here with our hands tied behind our back and there's not a whole lot we can do," Donoho added.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

The building owners are looking into rebuilding.

As of Sunday night power had been restored to most of the Downtown area after 252 customers lost power around 4:52 P.M. Sunday.

Click here for video shot by News 3 producer Cody Lillich from Downtown

*Previous Story*

Flames and smoke billowed out of control Sunday afternoon in Downtown Bryan reducing the Court's Saddlery store to ashes.

More than 40 firefighters from Bryan and College Station battled the blaze which turned the normally quiet downtown into a disaster area as smoke reduced visibility to zero at times along Main Street and caused transformers to spark.

David Hodges was leaving his house when he witnessed the blaze from afar.

"Seen the smoke crossing the track and so we came up." he said, "Seen the cars that were blocked off so we went down to Sims, tried to go around it that it was the Varisco Building at first but it was Old Court's Saddlery's burning"

"It's a very significant fire, very disappointing, for the Court Family." Mayor Jason Bienski said, "They've been in business here for a long time in downtown Bryan and the building seems to be a loss at this point."

Crews continued to work late in to the night a frustrated fire fighters because more couldn't be done.

Fire Chief Mike Donoho commented on how his crews were attacking the fire.

"When the fire crews arrived they had heavy fire involvement up in the attic area." he said, "They originally tried to get inside the building to extinguish the fire and the roof and the ceiling area began to collapse on the firefighters so they had to come out.

Donoho said no one was believed to be inside when the fire started because the business was closed.

"We really would have liked to have got in and put this fire out to save the building but you can see behind me the entire structure is beginning to collapse and we've poured thousands and thousands of gallons on this that you could contain it and make sure it doesn't spread to other areas but it is extremely frustrating I feel like we're standing out here with our hands tied behind our back and there's not a whole lot we can do."


Join the Conversation!

To comment, the following rules must be followed:

  • No Obscenity, Profanity, Vulgarity, Racism or Violent Descriptions
  • No Negative Community Comparisons
  • No Fighting, Name-calling, Trolling or Personal Attacks
  • Multiple Accounts are Not Allowed
  • Stay on Story Topic

Comments may be monitored for inappropriate content, but the station is under no legal obligation to do so.
If you believe a comment violates the above rules, please use the Flagging Tool to alert a Moderator.
Flagging does not guarantee removal.

Multiple violations may result in account suspension.
Decisions to suspend or unsuspend accounts are made by Station Moderators.
Questions may be sent to comments@kbtx.com. Please provide detailed information.

powered by Disqus
KBTX-TV Channel 3 4141 E. 29th Street Bryan, TX 77802 Phone: (979) 846-7777 Fax: (979) 846-1490 News Fax: (979) 846-1888
Gray Television, Inc. - Copyright © 2002-2014 - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 113172119 - kbtx.com/a?a=113172119