Fort Lauderdale church suffers minor damage after workers notice fire

FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (WSVN) - A church in Fort Lauderdale suffered minor damage after construction crews working on the roof noticed a fire beginning to break out.

The fire occurred at the Agape Worship Center, on Northwest 22nd Street, Wednesday.

“Often with fires like this, the contractors don’t even know that the fire has started because it’s behind the walls or it’s in the attic space,” Fort Lauderdale Fire Rescue Battalion Chief Stephen Gollan said. “It’s not until the fire is much larger. That’s when we get the call.”

According to fire officials, the cause of the fire is construction-related.

Workers called 911 when they spotted the first signs of fire.

“They were hot tarring the roof in, which got away from them and spread to some of the rafters,” Gollan said.

Due to the ongoing construction work, the children who normally use the sanctuary as a day care center were in a different building.

Water from the firefighting efforts caused some damage, but nearly everything inside remained untouched.

“You know, if this had been at the end of the work day and it had gone unnoticed, who knows what we would have come in to find,” Gollan said.

Fire officials said because the workers continue to work on the rafters and the power is off, it may be a few days before they can use the sanctuary.

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