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Salem fire drives 70 residents from apartments

About 70 Salem residents were displaced early Tuesday morning when a two-alarm fire raced through their apartment building on Dow Street, officials said.

No injuries were reported, but several people were given oxygen at the scene.

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Salem firefighters responded at 1:15 a.m. to the fire in the four-story brick building.

“The fire started outside on the first floor, then spread up through the porches and up through the upper floors of the building,” Salem Fire Captain Alan Dionne said.

All the residents in the 32-unit building were able to escape through the front, except for one man who was stranded on the fourth floor, where the flames and smoke were too heavy for firefighters to penetrate, Dionne said. The man, in his 30s, was rescued by an aerial ladder. “It was a lot of families and young children,” Dionne said. “Firefighters had to enter the building and lead all of them through the hallway and out of the building.”

Displaced residents were provided emergency shelter at the Salem Council on Aging. They are receiving assistance from the American Red Cross.

Dionne said some residents had found places to stay, but that 36 were still in the shelter.

The fire is being investigated by the Salem fire and police departments. Dionne said there was extensive damage to the building.

Peabody, Beverly, Swampscott, Lynn, and Marblehead firefighters assisted Salem.

Catalina Gaitan can be reached at catalina.gaitan@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter at @catalina_gaitan.
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