• Boston Fire battle multi-alarm blaze in Dorchester amid weekend heat

    By: Elysia Rodriguez

    Updated:

    BOSTON - Officials responded to a multi-alarm fire in Dorchester on Sunday afternoon, according to the Boston Fire Department. They were able to knock down the blaze, which rose to five alarms, at 4:30 p.m. on Sunday.

    Related: 1 dead, 1 rescued in Roxbury after firefighters battled flames in extreme heat

    The blaze broke out at 439 Quincy Street in Dorchester before quickly rising to five alarms.

    Boston Fire was able to knock the fire down around 4:30 p.m. on Sunday. The firefighters worked to contain the blaze despite the oppressive heat that engulfed the region over the weekend. 

    The Red Cross was on scene in Dorchester after the fire to help with the roughly 30 people who were displaced as a result of the blaze.

    "With the heat index as high as it was we wanted to get people out of the heat as quickly as possible [...] and get them somewhere cool," said Larry French, the Manager of the Red Cross Disaster Program. 

    The city provided an MBTA bus to give tenants a place to cool off until the Red Cross could find hotels for them for the night. The Salvation Army also provided water and snacks to everyone struggling in the heat. 

    "This is the sixth big fire we've had in the last week, so we've been dealing with a lot of these fires in this kind of heat," French said. 

    There's extensive damage to the Quincy Street home, as well as to two neighboring structures.

    The heat made fighting the fire challenging. Firefighters rotated in and out of the multi-family home, trying to keep the fire from spreading while also trying to keep from being overwhelmed by the heat

    "I'm praying for all the families and I'm praying for the Boston firefighters that are out here in this excruciating heat fighting this battle," said Joao Depina of Dorchester. 

    Two firefighters were injured while battling the fire. The Chief of Operations said both injuries are minor. One is a cut, the other is likely heat related.

    "The equipment breathes to a certain point, but really it doesn't because it's meant to keep the heat from coming from the outside in through the fabric, in through the body, so the equipment is designed to protect you from the heat," said Gerry Fontana, Chief of Operations for Boston Fire, on the difficulties of working in the extreme heat. "So on a day like today, it's tough to operate in an encapsulated suit like this."

    The heat of the fire even melted siding on a home behind the blaze, nearly 50 feet away. 

    The cause of the fire doesn't appear to be suspicious, but the investigation continues.

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