Phillips Collection Remains Closed After Fire

Gallery Calls Blaze "Renovation-Related"

View Comments (
)
|
Email
|
Print

    NEWSLETTERS

    A fire damaged the structure of the popular art gallery; the art is safe.

    The Phillips Collection is closed until further notice due to a fire that broke out this morning.

    An automatic fire alarm alerted D.C. Fire & EMS at 8:26 a.m. Firefighters arrived to find fire coming from the roof of the building at 1600 21st St. N.W.

    "The units made an aggressive interior attack, and right now we're in the salvage portion of the fire," said Deputy Fire Chief Kenneth Crosswhite. "We're removing artwork from the affected area over into an unaffected area."

    All four floors suffered either smoke or water damage, due to sprinklers. The blaze took about 50 firefighters 10 to 15 minutes to extinguish.

    D.C. Fire & EMS says the fire was accidental, with the probable cause of welders on the roof. Damage to the structure is approximately $250,000.

    The Phillips Collection called the fire "renovation-related" in a release.

    "All artwork is safe and secure. Museum conservators are currently evaluating the artwork but nothing has incurred significant damage. The building condition is being evaluated as well," said spokesperson Cecilia Wagner in the release.

    Phillips After 5, a popular Thursday night event, has been postponed for tonight. A GW class scheduled will take place as planned.


    Fan, Follow and Text: Get the latest from NBCWashington.com anytime, anywhere. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook. Sign up for our e-mail newsletters and get breaking news delivered right to your mobile phone -- just text DCBREAKING to 622339 to sign up. (Message and data rates may apply.)