Labor Day Fire Displaces 5, Causes Roughly $300K in Damage

One engine dealt with a motorcycle accident on its way to the fire, according to the Somerville Fire Department.

A Labor Day fire at a two-story condo building on Irvington Road in West Somerville has displaced five people—a family of four, with two young children, who lived on the second floor and a woman who lived on the first floor, according to Chief Kevin Kelleher of the Somerville Fire Department.

The fire caused an estimated $300,000 worth of damage, Kelleher said.

The Somerville Fire Department responded to the fire, at 31-33 Irvington Road, at about 9:42 p.m., and by 9:57 p.m. it was a two-alarm situation, the fire chief said. Fire trucks from Arlington, Medford and Boston also responded.

Kim Rego, a neighbor, said, "I never saw so many fire trucks." 

One of the engines responding to the fire first had to deal with a motorcycle accident, according to Kelleher. A motorcyclist at the intersection of Boston Avenue and Route 16 saw the fire truck coming and hit his brakes hard, Kelleher said. Firefighters "observed [the] motorcyclist fly through the air and hit the ground," according to the fire chief. They treated the motorcyclist, who didn't have major injuries, before moving onto the fire.

Of the fire, Kelleher said, "The cause is not suspicious [and was] more than likely accidental." It was possibly an electrical fire, he said.

Although there wasn't a major blaze visible from the street, Kelleher called the fire "serious," and Rego, speaking Tuesday, said there was a lot of smoke, and she heard firefighters using chainsaws.

Two firefighters suffered minor injuries—one leg injury and one elbow injury—while fighting the fire, Kelleher said.

Rego said the fire appeard to have started in the second-floor bathroom, and a woman from the second floor "was sitting in the driveway in her underclothes with her baby."

The American Red Cross of Massachusetts provided emergency funds to one adult for food, clothing, shoes, toiletries and emergency temporary housing, according to an email from the rescue organization.


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