The Somerville Fire Department has battled two serious three alarm fires within the past week. Both of these fires have been determined to be accidental, the result of smoking. The first fire, on Friday, June 18th was reported just after 3 p.m. at 93 Temple Street. Arriving firefighters encountered heavy fire in the rear of the third floor.
The building was an occupied three story dwelling containing three apartments. The fire spread into the third floor apartment and into the attic space eventually burning through the roof. The building suffered heavy damage due to fire, smoke and water and all nine adult occupants have been displaced. Somerville Health & Human Services responded along with the Red Cross. Seven firefighters suffered minor injuries. The fire claimed the lives of two pet cats, a rabbit and a bird. Firefighters responded back to the building the following day to extinguish a smoldering area that was burning between several layers of roof. That fire was quickly extinguished.
On Tuesday, June 22nd a fire was reported at 17 Bond Street at 121 a.m. Firefighters arrived to find the front of the 2 ½ story home fully engulfed in fire and spreading to the adjacent house at 15. Several Somerville Police Officers were first to arrive and were instrumental in notifying and evacuating both houses. The Officers quickly realized the life safety hazard and disregarding their own safety, worked to get residents out. The fire spread into all three floors of the home which contained two apartments. The home suffered significant damage resulting in 10 adult occupants being displaced. The occupants were assisted by Somerville Health & Human Services and the Red Cross. Two Somerville firefighters and one Everett firefighter suffered minor injuries.
It is somewhat disheartening that we continue to see such serious fires caused by smoking materials. We have been fortunate that no one has been killed or seriously injured although serious destruction has resulted. I am disappointed that the message of “Put it out. All the way. Every time” is not being taken seriously. I am urging all residents who smoke to please use a metal bucket or can full of sand or water to dispose of their smoking materials. Do not extinguish smoking material in potted plants, on porch railings or in combustible containers. Also do not toss smoking material off porches where it could land and ignite mulch or other combustible material.
All photos courtesy of Somerville FD