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Firefighters quell midnight blaze on the Heights

The Concord Fire Department quickly extinguished a fire shortly before midnight Sunday on the Heights.

Battalion Chief Guy Newbury said the department dispatched trucks to 14 Eastern Ave. at 11:37 Sunday night. The front porch area of unit 9, which is one of the central units in the townhouse complex off East Side Drive, caught fire, and the flames extended into the house and up to the second floor.

The six residents of the unit had escaped before firefighters arrived, Newbury said, and no one was injured.

“They had to escape through the rear door,” he said. “Some of them escaped onto a first floor roof area, like an attached storage shed, and then they helped each other get off the roof.”

The fire department responded to the fire with 20 personnel, which was everyone on duty at the time, Newbury said.

Firefighters extinguished the main body of the fire in about 10 minutes, and then worked to check for fire extension in the walls and attic. They also checked surrounding units, some of which experienced smoke damage.

“The units to the adjacent sides were evacuated, the ones that had smoke,” said Newbury. “We didn’t evacuate the entire complex . . . some of them had nothing at all. They have fire walls separating
each one of them that are fairly significant.”

Newbury said unit 9 suffered extensive damage in the first-floor entryway and the second floor, and the residents will be displaced for an extended period of time.

“It was a fairly close call I’d say, if (the residents) had to exit out the rear and onto a roof,” he said.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

(Mel Flanagan can be reached at 369-3321 or
mflanagan@cmonitor.com.)

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