Buyer’s Flea Market Four Alarm Fire Chicago West Side
by Kathy Brocks 03/08/2016
A 4 Alarm fire Photographed by Josh Boyajian, Tim Olk, Daniel Schell and Paul Biasco, DNAinfo media, this morning at the Buyer’s Flea Market devastated the west side community of West Humboldt park. The Buyer’s Flea Market is at 4545 West Division Chicago Illinois. Local businesses noticed smoke and several people running out of the building around 9:40 am today. Cars parked on the roof of the flea market fell into the roof of the burning building. Cars underneath the structure caught fire shooting flames out of the openings of the building on the ground level. This brutal blaze almost took the life of a woman trapped in the bathroom. A Chicago Fire fighter rescued the woman. The woman refused additional treatment beyond immediate care. It is unclear if any of the vendors or employees are undocumented workers. The Chicago Fire Department ordered all fire fighters out of the building due to the increasing danger of the structure becoming unstable.
The Buyer’s Flea Market held about 4000 vendors who sold food, clothing and household items. The rooftop parking area held 1100 spaces with two additional locations for parking. The contract between the Buyer’s Flea Market owner and the vendors stated that all outside vendors must take their merchandise with them upon close of business.
The inside vendors are offered space and storage at an additional cost. The Buyer’s Flea Market is so popular and successful it has a vendor space waiting list. The flea market doors only opened on Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
It is not known whether any of the vendors had insurance on their inventory as is a norm for business owners and entrepreneurs. It is also not clear whether or not the Buyer’s Flea Market owner’s insurance will be in effect due to the inspection failures from 2014. The DNAinfo online Chicago edition news media also reported that the Buyer’s Flea Market did have plans for making repairs.
Photos reveal the horror of the loss of 500 families in this community. Some reported losses estimated at $25,000. It is too early to know the cause of the fire and whether or not the Buyer’s Flea Market Owner will rebuild the Flea Market.
The State of Illinois lists the Buyer’s Flea Market owner as Gregory Morand and agent Lee R Bookman. The Buyer’s Flea Market began some 35 years ago in 1980 with only 8 vendors. The National Association of Flea Markets statistics states there are 1100 registered flea markets with traffic flow of 150 million people making purchases yearly exceeding $30 billion in sales.
ACAW Media will keep you updated on the progress and options for the entrepreneurs of the Buyer’s Flea Market.
Tim Olk Photo source,2016/3/8, 6:30 pm, http://chicagoareafire.com/blog/2016/03/chicago-4-11-alarm-1-special-and-haz-mat-level-i-3-8-16-more-2/
National Association of Flea Markets,2016/3/8, 6:30 pm, http://www.fleamarkets.org/
Buyer’s Flea Market 2016/3/8, 6:30 pm , http://www.buyersfleamarket.com/about/
Posted on 03/08/2016, in City, News, Uncategorized and tagged 4 Alarm Fire, Buyer's Flea Market ABLAZE, Buyer's Flea Market Fire 03/08/2016, West Humboldt Flea Market 4 Alarm Fire. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.