Sunday, March 3, 2013
A fire that is believed to have started on the first floor has destroyed
a building on Walnut St in East Providence. Neighbors say the large
home has been in place for over 60 years and was currently being used as
a rooming house. Firefighters arrived around 10:30pm to find heavy fire
on the first and second floors. Flames quickly spread throughout the
structure. Two occupants who were home at the time were able to escape
unharmed while a third could not be located on scene.
During the interior attack, three firefighters were forced to exit
through a third floor window after becoming trapped by heavy fire
conditions. EPFD Ladder 1 was in place to serve as an evacuation route
for those firefighters, who escaped unharmed. Incident command then
ordered all remaining firefighters out of the building. Following the
evacuation broadcast over the radio, emergency sirens and air horns
filled the neighborhood to serve as an additional warning signal to
firefighters working the scene. With flames continuing to push from the
upper windows and roof area, the third floor roof suffered a partial
collapse. Companies were withheld from entering the building thereafter.
Master streams were set up to work along with multiple hand lines
placed around the home. Firefighters were still actively working on
Walnut street into the morning hours.
According to acting fire chief Oscar Elmasian, all available apparatus
within East Providence was called to the scene while mutual aid fire
companies from surrounding communities assisted to cover the rest of the