PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A homeless man is allegedly responsible for a hotel fire in Philadelphia’s Old City neighborhood on Wednesday. Luckily, fire crews showed up at the Society Hill Hotel within minutes.
Philadelphia police say this fire was arson and the suspect is a homeless man.READ MORE: Philadelphia's First Parade Celebrating All Winter Holidays Takes Place Saturday
It all started on the third floor of the Society Hill Hotel at 3rd and Chestnut Streets.
At the start of the fire, flames and smoke could be seen shooting from the windows. Crews were dispatched at 9:36 a.m. Wednesday and within 20 minutes it was under control.
There is a restaurant on the first floor, but it was not open at the time. In fact, it has been closed due to COVID-19.
It isn’t clear how the fire started, but police were immediately on the hunt for a man wearing a blue puffy jacket and surgical mask.READ MORE: Man Struck, Killed By Vehicle In North Philadelphia, Police Say
Fire officials say they did not hear an alarm system when they showed up at the scene, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t one in the building or that it isn’t working.
The Society Hill Hotel is located in the heart of the city’s historic Old City District.
The Philadelphia Fire Department Battalion Chief William McPeak discussed the importance of a quick response to this sensitive area.
“Anytime you get something down here, you can see these buildings, all different sizes, all different construction, it’s important to get here quick and luckily we got here quick this morning,” Chief McPeak said.MORE NEWS: Gov. Tom Wolf Visits Chester, Praises Organizations Working To Make Streets Safer From Gun Violence
Although there were people in the hotel at the time, there are no reported injuries. It is unclear if anyone is in custody at this time.