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Monday, January 2, 2017

High-rise fire in Bailey's Crossroads displaces six

Residents of Skyline Plaza watch firefighters at work. [FCFRD]
Six people, including a child, were rescued from a fire on the 25th and 26th stories of the Skyline Plaza condominium at 3705 S. George Mason Drive in Bailey’s Crossroads Jan. 1. There were no injuries.

The two-alarm fire started in the evening in the bedroom of a unit on the 25th floor of the 26-story building and spread to the unit on the floor above, says Deputy Chief Anthony Barrero with the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department.

People are usually rescued from high-rises via stairwells, but in this case, an elevator was used as it wasn’t near the affected units, Barrero says. The ladders only reach seven stories.

One of the occupants called the fire department after finding smoke in the apartment. There were no smoke detectors. Damage is estimated at $67,000. The origin and cause of the fire are still under investigation. 


  1. "there were no smoke detectors" what?!?! in a high rise I would have expected not only smoke detectors, but an integrated building-wide fire panel and sprinkler system. surely these buildings aren't THAT antiquated that they were built before code required that? They are death traps without it!

    1. ^^ My thoughts, exactly!

    2. Unfortunately these buildings are from before integrated sprinklers were required. They are from the early 70s. Additionally, smoke detectors are the responsibility of individual unit owners/tenants.

      The one saving grace of the construction format is the cement slabs that form every floor prevented the fire from reaching other floors. It spread to the 26th floor only because the heat burst out several windows of the 25th floor unit, and the flames grew so high they reached the 26th floor and burst a window there then spread inside the room.
      The good news is nobody was injured in the blaze, tenants and firefighters alike.

  2. Yikes. You are really putting your life in other peoples' hands when you live in close quarters like this.

  3. Skyline has turned into a vertical slum. This is what happens in buildings with low income and uninterested landlords and county officials to make sure that the area's housing stock is safe. The ghettoizing of this area is now in hyperdrive.