3-alarm fire causes $1 million in damage to Jamaica Plain home; day-care center evacuated
Their bodies wrapped in blankets for protection against the elements, five small children narrowly avoided injury Tuesday morning when they were rushed out of a day-care center in a home that went up in flames in Jamaica Plain, authorities said.
Fire officials said an unattended candle on the first floor of 165 Lamartine St. sparked the blaze, which caused an estimated $1 million in damages.
Dramatic footage on WCVB-TV showed adults carrying the swaddled children, who were attending a licensed day care inside the house, to a Boston police cruiser at the scene of the three-alarm fire.
The children were in the basement level of 165 Lamartine St. when the blaze quickly tore through the 2 ½-story wood-framed home around 10 a.m., according to Boston fire officials.
“Heavy fire on arrival from a 2 ½ story single family house with a day care in the basement,” the Boston Fire Department tweeted. “Now a 3rd alarm.”
Fire officials tweeted soon afterward that the children were safe.
“All residents safely evacuated including those in the day care,” the department wrote. “No injuries at this time. Extensive overhauling [operations] underway.”
The department posted photos of heavy smoke billowing from the yellow house, including from the side of the home on Paul Gore Street.
Marc Sanders, a Fire Department spokesman, said the fire was knocked down around 10:40 a.m., and damages were estimated at $1 million and could rise.
Authorities said four adults were displaced.
“No injuries,” fire officials tweeted.
Boston fire Commissioner Joseph Finn also briefed reporters at the scene.
“There [were] five children in the day care with at least one or two day-care workers,” Finn told reporters.
The state Department of Early Education and Care, which oversees day-care facilities in Massachusetts, said the property is licensed to care for up to eight children in the basement and first-floor living room.
The agency’s last visit to the home came on Nov. 22. The occupants’ current day-care license expires in September 2020.
“The Department of Early Education and Care (EEC) recently visited the home at 165 Lamartine Street in Jamaica Plain as part of a license renewal visit,” the agency said in a statement. “EEC renewed the educator’s family child-care license effective 9/29/2017, and the license is in good standing.”
The house was listed in good overall condition before the fire, according to the city’s online assessing database. The listed owners couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.