Fire destroys home in New Britain

Fire destroyed a two-family home in New Britain on Friday morning.Police said it broke out just before 6:30 a....

Posted: Mar 23, 2018 7:31 PM
Updated: Mar 23, 2018 7:31 PM

Fire destroyed a two-family home in New Britain on Friday morning.

Police said it broke out just before 6:30 a.m. at 209 Maple St.

"It just goes to show you what could happen, you leave your house in the morning and you could home and you have nothing," said Frank Domijan, an eyewitness.

Road closures were in place in the area, according to police.

"My daughter came in and said the house next door was on fire," said Noel Santana, an eyewitness.

Santana said he knew he needed to get his family out of harm's way once they realized the home next door was on fire.

"I did what a father would do, just moved everyone to the far bedroom," Santana said.

Fire Captain Michael Berry of the New Britain Fire Department said eight people were safely evacuated. Six live there and two were guests.

One family lives on the first floor and another lives on the second and third floors.

The fire was well underway by the time firefighters arrived.

"The fire had taken ahold of the building and we had to back our crews out," Berry said.

Berry said firefighters started with an interior attack, but there were structural integrity problems that forced them to pull the crews out. Pieces of the home started to collapse.

Some of the surrounding homes were also evacuated.

"We are concerned that if the building has a structural problem, it may take some wires down so we are cornering off areas in case those wires do come down that all people will be safe," Berry said.

They then moved to an exterior attack.

Darren Melanson lives on one of the evacuated homes. He went to the scene to make sure everything was ok.

"I went upstairs and got my sister's dog, Melanson said. "Fortunately, it doesn't look like it's going to hit our house."

Mutual aid from West Hartford, Bristol, Meriden and Hartford covered calls for New Britain, which had to call in mutual aid to fight the fire.

No injuries were reported.

A cause has also not yet been determined. The fire marshal is investigating.

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