BOONVILLE, N.Y. (UPDATE) – Fire crews continue to battle a fire that tore through downtown Boonville late Tuesday night.
Assistant Fire Chief Dean Yauger says it is still considered an active fire.
Five buildings have been declared total losses, including Slim’s Restaurant, Strands Salon and a decor store called Country Connections. Crews demolished some of the structures Wednesday morning, as locals somberly looked on.
"This is devastating to the community -- being on Main Street some of these storefronts have been vacant for a few years...storefronts [were] being re-invigorated, starting to spruce up Main Street a little bit...so this is devastating, it hits the village right in the heart,” said Yauger.
Fifteen people have been displaced by the fire, and the American Red Cross is providing financial assistance to three adults. Any residents impacted by the fire can call the Red Cross Emergency Communications Center at 800-831-0927.
Those affected by the fire can find food and shelter at Boonville Elementary School or the United Methodist Church on Main Street.
According to Yauger, fire officials believe the fire started in the rear of one of the buildings, but are still investigating to determine an official cause.
No injuries were reported.
The initial calls reporting the fire came in just before 10 p.m. Tuesday. Multiple crews responded, including Boonville, Barneveld, Stittville, Western, Remsen, Lowville and Whitesboro. A county air van from the Utica Fire Department was on the scene as well.
Boonville Mayor Eric McIntyre asks drivers and pedestrians to avoid traveling near Main, Post and East Schuyler streets.
The ‘What’s Happening in Boonville, New York’ Facebook page has also created a GoFundMe account for victims of the fire.