Man Critically Injured in Lawndale Blaze

The fire occurred at a strip mall in the 1800 block of South Kostner Avenue.

Saturday, Sep 1, 2012  |  Updated 8:40 PM CDT
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Man Critically Injured in Lawndale Blaze

Firefighters believe a cutting torch used by the worker caused an explosion which led to the blaze that collapsed the storefront of a strip mall in the Lawndale neighborhood.

Firefighters are investigating the cause of blaze at a strip mall in the Lawndale neighborhood which left a man in critical condition and collapsed the front of a store Saturday evening.

The man, believed to be about 25-years-old, was rehabbing a storefront in the 1800 block of South Kostner Avenue when the blaze ignited, Chicago Fire Media Affairs tweeted.

He was using a cutting torch, which firefighters suggested may have caused an explosion that ignited the blaze, according to another tweet from Fire Media Affairs.

The man suffered burns and was listed in critical condition at Mount Sinai Hospital, Fire Media Affairs said.

Firefighters were able to extinguish the blaze about 6:30 p.m., Fire Media Affairs said, and investigators on Saturday night continued to piece together what caused the fire.

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