Building collapses after major fire breaks out in downtown Portsmouth

Kaitlyn Frederick on a GoFundMe page set up to assist residents and employees affected by the State Street fire

Firefighters are not sure if all residents who live in apartments above the three-story building are accounted for, but are working with the property owner to account for them, Achilles said.

The State Street Saloon was a staple of Portsmouth's downtown culture and many people, like Alison Burridge, were out to mourn the loss. The flames spread to a neighboring building that houses several apartments.

Hayes says he and his roommates were woken up by a neighbor knocking on their door, telling them there was a fire and they needed to get out. Crews were forced to fight the fire from the outside because of the intense flames and building collapses.

By sunrise, piles of rubble stood at the corner.

Resident Craig Langton said, "The alarm went off around 1".

Fire officials say the fire started in the State Street Saloon around 12:30 a.m. Investigators were checking reports that the fire started in the kitchen area or possibly in a nearby alley, Achillles said. "We did have one firefighter that had minor injuries, and he's being transferred (to a hospital) for evaluation".