Fire in Hankinson causes apartments to evacuate

The Hankinson and Wahpeton fire departments were among eight departments who responded to a fire call in downtown Hankinson Tuesday night.

The fire started over the Hankinson Post’s Hardware Hank where several apartments are located. The fire call came around 9 p.m.

Brett Lambrecht of the Wahpeton Fire Department said fire crews arrived with flames coming out of the back side of the building near the top of the two-story structure.

The Hankinson Fire Department initially called Lidgerwood for assistance and Wahpeton for use of its ariel fire truck. Fire departments from Great Bend, Mantador, Dwight, Mooreton and the Richland County Sheriff’s Department responded.

Fire fighters had the fire contained after about 25 minutes after arrival and 11 apartment occupants have been displaced by the fire.

Lambrecht said damage was extensive to the upstairs apartments and the hardware store below suffered some damage with smoke and water damage.

Fire departments remained on the scene most of the night in case of flare-ups.

The Richland County Sheriff’s Office says the cause of the fire is under investigation. The North Dakota Fire Marshall will be on the scene today to start the investigation.