Fire breaks out at student highrise under construction in Winnipeg

WINNIPEG — Flames from a burning student housing highrise that’s under construction lit up the sky in Winnipeg overnight, and forced the closure of a major thoroughfare on the city’s south side on Saturday.

The Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service says crews responded to the blaze at the 15-storey tower on Pembina Highway, near the University of Manitoba, at about 12:30 Saturday morning.

They say there were heavy flames and smoke coming from the building, and also smaller fires around the structure that were caused by falling debris.

Two nearby residential buildings were evacuated as a precaution, but all residents have since returned to their homes.

Pembina Highway was closed in both directions in the area for much of the morning but reopened in stages later in the day, although officials warned drivers to be cautious since the water used to fight the fire was frozen onto the road.

There are no reports of injuries, and no word yet on the cause of the fire.

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