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100 displaced after apartment building fire in Holyoke

Minor injuries for 2 firefighters

More than 100 people were displaced after a three-alarm fire tore through the upper floor and roof of their apartment building in Holyoke early Monday morning, officials said.

Two firefighters had minor injuries, said Holyoke Fire Captain Tony Cerruti.

Firefighters responded to reports of flames at the four-story brick apartment building at Dwight and Elm streets at 3:57 a.m., Cerruti said. Upon arrival, firefighters discovered that flames were spreading from the porches onto the roof and into units on the fourth floor of the building.

“The rear porches were put out pretty quickly, but extinguishing the area that runs between the top floor and the roof of the building was very labor-intensive,” Cerruti said in a telephone interview Monday morning. “The guys made a great effort.”

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Every resident of the 56-unit building made it safely out of the building before firefighters had to knock down part of the roof.

Firefighters remained at the scene knocking down parts of the exterior of the building so it would not collapse onto the street, Cerruti said.

American Red Cross volunteers provided assistance to displaced residents.

The fire alarms in the building were probably triggered after smoke traveled from the rear porches into the nearest apartments. The building was not equipped with a sprinkler system, Cerruti said.

The state fire marshal and Holyoke Fire Department are investigating the cause of the blaze.

An estimate of damage to the building has not been made, but Cerruti said several units had heavy smoke damage, in addition to parts of the building that needed to be knocked down to extinguish the flames.

Firefighters from several towns, including South Hadley, Chicopee, Easthampton, and West Springfield, assisted, Cerruti said.


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