Families displaced after fire tears through apartment building in East Providence


EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Three families are left without a home after a fire started in the second-floor unit of an apartment building on Sixth Street in East Providence on Friday afternoon.

East Providence Fire Chief Glenn Quick told 12 News that 911 calls started coming in from neighbors around 3:30, but the fire had been going on for some time. He said no one in the building was home at the time.

“Some of the occupants were away for Thanksgiving, and another occupant had just left sometime today to go to another destination,” Quick said. “If they were home, I think it would have been an early detection. It looks like it’s a late detection. A neighbor noticed the smoke and the fire when the windows broke and that’s when the fire department was notified.”

Quick said the fire started in the rear of the second-floor apartment and spread quickly due to the wind gusts. It took firefighters around 20 minutes to get the fire under control, he said.

The Providence Fire Department assisted East Providence firefighters in what Quick describes as a “labor-intensive” fire.

He said there are ways to prevent late-detection fires like this one.

“(With) early detection, it’s a smaller fire and we get notified way before it gets out of control,” Quick said. “A working carbon monoxide detector and a smoke detector are your cheapest, and I can’t say it enough, cheapest life insurance.”

No one was injured and the cause of the fire is currently under investigation.

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