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Rogue River business sustains heavy damage in 3-alarm fire

Firefighters attempt to knock down a fire at the Double R Pub in Rogue River. The blaze drew a 3-alarm response, with multiple agencies flocking to the scene. (Submitted photo)

ROGUE RIVER — Firefighters from eight Rogue Valley fire agencies converged on a massive 3-alarm structure fire early Friday morning, according to fire officials.

Crews from the Rogue River Fire District first responded at 2:47 a.m. to the blaze, in the 300 block of East Main Street in Rogue River, according to emergency dispatch logs. The fire was burning at a small strip mall where the Double R Pub is located, with flames visible on the roof and interior.

There had also been reports of an explosion prior to the original 911 calls.

“I actually heard the explosion from my house,” said Rogue River fire chief Mike Hammond. “And then we got the structure fire call.”

Rogue River fire officials issued a third alarm because of the intensity and size, drawing additional assistance from the Evans Valley Fire District, the Grants Pass Department of Public Safety, Rural Metro Fire, Jackson County Fire District 3, Medford Fire-Rescue, Applegate Valley Fire District No. 9, and the Williams Fire Department.

Eight engines and a ladder truck responded to the scene, Hammond said.

“It was a pretty laborious fire,” he said. “We just needed a lot of people and we got a lot of help.”

Oregon State Police and Rogue River police also responded.

The bulk of the fire was at the Double R Pub, which is book-ended by a laundromat and an antique store, Hammond said. The two businesses sustained some structural damage, but Hammond said the contents inside the buildings, such as the washers and dryers in the laundromat and the antique store wares, are OK.

A nearby home had to be evacuated, but firefighters were able to protect it, officials said. A stretch of Main Street had to be closed because of hoses running across the street from nearby hydrants, and nearby Park Street also had to be closed so an engine could be parked there, Hammond said. All streets have since reopened.

It took crews an hour and 20 minutes to knock down the fire, Hammond said, adding that significant additional overhaul work was required after firefighters gained the upper hand.

Several Facebook users applauded firefighter efforts on Rogue River Fire’s agency page.

“We watched your excellent work in the wee hours this morning,” one comment reads. “We're no fire scientists, but it looks like you contained it fast.”

“Great job stopping it. The best,” another comment reads.

Additional details about the incident, including how long it took firefighters to extinguish the blaze, were not immediately available. The building sustained “extensive damage,” the release said.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation. Hammond said that investigation will be an extensive one.

Reach Mail Tribune web editor Ryan Pfeil at 541-776-4468 or rpfeil@rosebudmedia.com. Follow him on Twitter at @ryanpfeil.