July 17, 2019
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Overnight fire rips through Bangor building, displacing 4 tenants

John Clarke Russ | BDN
John Clarke Russ | BDN
Bangor Fire Department's Station 6 on Griffin Road

The Bangor Fire Department spent all night fighting a multi-unit fire on Warren Street in an all-hands-on-deck effort, according to Chandler Corriveau, assistant fire chief.

All four tenants escaped uninjured, and the cause of the fire remains under investigation. Two of three pet cats are unaccounted for, meaning Corriveau does not know if they got out unharmed.

Fire departments from neighboring communities including Orono, Brewer, Veazie, Hermon and Holden assisted Bangor firefighters at the scene, Corriveau said.

Dispatch received a call about a shed on fire just before 9:30 p.m. Friday, which turned out to be a storage unit at the back of 203 Warren St. The residence was built in 1910 as a single-family home, and there were no fire stops.

“If there are no fire stops, it allows the fire to travel up and down,” Corriveau said. “That’s what happened in this case.”

First responders decided soon after arriving at the building that the fire would require all of the city’s resources, including roughly 40 firefighters on duty at the scene.

“This was a large building; there was a lot of work,” Corriveau said. “We rotated crews in and out of the building.”

Smoke detectors alerted the tenants, and they were able to evacuate safely. Corriveau stressed the critical role functioning smoke detectors play in residents’ safety.

“This is the second fire I’ve had this week where working smoke detectors made the difference,” he said.

The building suffered significant damage, but Corriveau does not know if it can be salvaged or will have to be demolished.

The fire department contacted the Red Cross to help with housing the displaced tenants. Twelve hours after the fire was first reported, Corriveau was on the scene for a preliminary investigation into what caused the blaze.

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