LOCK HAVEN -- Several businesses and apartments were evacuated early Friday morning after a fire broke out in downtown Lock Haven.
Firefighters spent the morning dousing flames.
An empty building in the city caught just before 7 a.m. Several businesses had to be evacuated because of the fire.
Clouds of smoke from the fire could be seen for miles.
"Disaster!" said John Wert. "About five businesses went up, some on Bellefonte Avenue and Main Street on the other side."
Citizens Hose Company in Lock Haven believes the fire may have started in the back of an empty building that, years ago, was a furniture store.
Newswatcher John Wert took some photos.
"It was fully involved when I took the pictures," said Wert. "It's the first time I have ever seen something like that in a long time."
With gallons of water being sprayed the streets and trees quickly froze over.
The fire was contained to the empty building but several apartments and businesses on the block were evacuated as a precaution.
"Mostly just water damage, so I think we'll be OK," said Rachel Stout, co-owner of Creative Images.
With the fire company's help, the owners of Creative Images hair salon went back into their shop to try and save few things.
"For the two minutes we could get in, we grabbed just, I mean, there is nothing that can't be replaced. It's just sad because it's 18 years of our life," said co-owner Maria Fourney.
Covenant United Methodist Church is behind the businesses. Firefighters tell us that building may have water and smoke damage but it was not heavily damaged.
The pastor of that church was getting calls all morning because from the street, it looked like her church may have been on fire.
"No one was in the church. It was prior to office hours," said Rev. Tanya Heatwole. "She's still standing and she's beautiful and she's proud and our God is good, so I'm great. I'm happy."
The cause of the fire is still under investigation.