PORTLAND, Ore. – Part of a Southeast Portland building collapsed late Wednesday afternoon.
Firefighters said a parapet fell down to the sidewalk near 4823 SE Division Street just before 4 p.m. The westbound lanes of Division Street near the building will be closed Thursday.
Witnesses said the building houses Cheshire Motorsports, a motorcycle shop. The owner of the shop said he was outside moments before 100-200 bricks fell.
"I just put a bike on the sidewalk for a customer, went inside, turned around at the counter and all of a sudden a plum of mortar dust filled the entire front of the shop," said Daric Cheshire.
No one was hurt.
"All of a sudden, we hear this massive bang and a cloud of dust comes towards us," said witness Joe Greer. "Right as I look over, I saw this gentleman. He was on the sidewalk and ran into the road, a foot to a foot-and-a-half from missing the building falling on him."
“I was right in back, doing a piercing,” said Blake Perlingieri. He owns NOMAD Piercing Studio. “We heard a really loud sound, and came out. My neighbor had just been out, and got a phone call. Went in, and missed being squashed.”
"If there was an earthquake, this would go down in a second," he said.
It’s unclear what caused the collapse. A spokesman for Portland Fire & Rescue said engineers were investigating.
A city of Portland spokesperson said the building might have a structural issue regarding the roof, but a report from the property owner's engineer will not be available until Friday. Then the city will move forward with a plan to at least re-open the sidewalk and road. As for the building itself, that might take more time.
PBOT says Westbound Division Street will be closed at least through Thursday, from 48th to 50th. Drivers should use an alternative route.