HANOVER, MASS. (WHDH) - Flames tore through a commercial building that houses multiple businesses in Hanover early Wednesday morning, leaving behind a charred shell.

Firefighters responding to a report of smoke coming from the back of the structure on Columbia Road just after 2 a.m. encountered a fast-moving fire that did not allow them to enter the building, according to Hanover Fire Chief Jeffrey Blanchard.

Crews attacked the flames from the outside, using ladder trucks to pour water onto the building.

A number of fire departments from surrounding communities responded to the scene to offer assistance.

Firefighters encountered trouble with their water supply when they first arrived.

“The first hydrant we tried to use, we couldn’t get the caps off of it,” Blanchard said. “We had a little delay getting water on the fire.”

An automatic fire alarm inside the building did not go off.

There were no reported injuries.

The building appears to be a total loss.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

This is a developing story; stay with 7NEWS on-air and online for the latest updates.

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