Structural Collapse Displaces 42 Units At Summit Hill Apartments

Incident Type
Monday, April 8, 2019 - 3:42pm
Monday, April 8, 2019 - 3:46pm
1200 Block McKenna Blvd
Madison, WI

Over 35 occupants are displaced following a partial interior collapse of an apartment building at 1202 McKenna Blvd. The Madison Fire Department was dispatched to the Summit Hill Apartments at 3:42 p.m., and responding crews were notified that evacuation was already in progress.

During a remodeling project in the lower level, contractors removed what turned out to be a load-bearing wall. As a result, the floors above caved in. The MFD's Heavy Urban Rescue Team and Squad 9 were among those assisting Ladder Company 2 and Engine Company 7. Firefighters performed a search on the building and gave an all-clear at 4:07 p.m., confirming everybody was out of the building, and nobody was injured.

The City of Madison Building Inspection Division also responded and deemed the property structurally unsound. Four apartment units were too dangerous to re-enter altogether. While stranded pets were retrieved by rescuers from those units, the tenants were not able to return to their homes to retrieve necessary belongings. All other building tenants were escorted into their apartments by members of the Madison Fire and Madison Police Departments to retrieve pets, changes of clothes, and other vital belongings.

Some tenants did have renter's insurance; the majority did not. Property managers arranged hotel rooms for the night for tenants who could not find another place to stay, but long-term arrangements are still pending.

At this time, there is no estimate as to when occupants will be able to return to the building.

Posted 04/08/2019 - 9:27pm

Cynthia Schuster (Public Information Officer)