Fitchburg fire forces evacuation of nearly a dozen residents

FITCHBURG, Mass. — Roughly a dozen people in Fitchburg had to evacuate a multi-family home on Sunday after a fire broke out at around 11:45 a.m., according to the city’s fire chief.

Resident Ada Arroyo said she saw the structure go up into flames, and quickly alerted other residents.

“I started screaming, turning to people to get out of the house. I didn’t want anybody to die,” she told Boston 25 News. “Somebody called 911, and so the police came and the firemen.”

Deputy Fire Chief Chad Courtemanche explained that everyone made it out safely, including pets.

Still, firefighters had their work cut out for them.

Courtemanche said there was low visibility inside the structure, and that all 3 floors had debris that had to be cleared out before firefighters could fully get to the flames.

Sunday’s hot temperatures only added to firefighter exhaustion, prompting the agency to strike multiple alarms and request backup.

“Due to the high heat and humidity we did have a few firefighters that had to be evaluated and treated, but no one was transported to the hospital and once they got fluids, they were feeling a lot better and they stayed and helped out more until the fire was out,” said Courtemanche.

He added that there was a false roof that firefighters had to cut through to ventilate the building properly.

The Red Cross announced they would be offering assistance to all displaced families.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation, according to Courtemanche.

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