Fire destroys historic house in Portland

8:23 PM, Jan 20, 2014   |    comments
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Fire destroys the home at 84 Irving Street.

PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) - At 9:20 PM Sunday, emergency workers began answering calls of a fire in a building in a densely packed neighborhood off the Portland peninsula.

Firefighters arrived on scene quickly and found the first floor fully engulfed in flames. They also found that all six residents of the home at 84 Irving Street had made it out safely.

The home was built in the 1880s, according to an assessor's record from 1924. Portland Fire Chief Jerome LaMoria says the building has been renovated several times and most recently was divided into a number of apartments.

All those renovations made fighting the fire a little more tricky, though. Chief LaMoria says that the rebuilds and segmenting created a lot of concealed spaces that sheltered the flames. Crews had to break open a number of walls to make sure the flames were fully extinguished.

The building, not too far from Woodford's Corner, is in a tightly packed neighborhood with narrow streets. A recent snowstorm left about an inch of hard packed snow on the surface of the tarmac, but Chief LaMoria says those conditions didn't lead to many complications fighting the blaze.

Neighboring homes were not endangered by the fire.

Chief LaMoria declined to name any of the occupants of the building, but he says the Red Cross will step in and help them until they have new places to live. 84 Irving Street is a complete loss.

Crews will likely be on scene through the night.


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