Fire crews continue to monitor hotspots after Hedderich Building fire

By  | 

WILLISTON, N.D. - Crews are keeping an eye on hotspots at the Hedderich Building, which burned down last night.

Investigators say they may never know how it started, but they may soon find out if anything can be saved.

The sight of the building's burnt shell brought back many memories.

"Shopping there all the time for my kids. I have two kids, shopping there for them. And, like I said, my mother in law worked here, so we'd come in and she'd say 'we're having a great sale today,' so we'd come down and go shopping. And they had everything," said Phyllis Haskins, Williston.

It was an icon for more than a century.

"This building here was the Fort Union of Williston North Dakota. This building right here was the trade area of the whole northwest North Dakota," said Williston Mayor Howard Klug.

While the damage at the building was, no doubt severe, it may not have been a complete loss. Fire crews were able to get this restored Williston Fire Department truck out from inside the building, and officials believe more may be able to be salvaged.

"When we were able to get in there, really happy that the damage was limited to water, and it looks like as long as the building is sound, and people can get in there at some point, there should be a lot of items that can come out like that," said Williston Fire Chief Jason Catrambone.

The first floor and basement were largely untouched by fire.

"It's a blessing that the city of Williston was able to provide our firefighters the equipment that we needed. 10 years ago, we didn't have this equipment, the whole block would have been gone. I really believe that," said Klug.

It will be up to a building inspector and an insurance company to determine if the shell of the building can be saved.

Traffic is closed around the building.

Summer Nights on Main on Thursday will go on as scheduled.