Fast-moving fire tears through E. Boston building
BOSTON (WHDH) -- Flames poured out of a triple-decker building on Sumner Street in East Boston Monday night.
As the fire began to build it wasn’t the smell that woke some people inside, it was the sounds.
“I was sleeping. I heard people screaming,” said Erasmo Gomez.
Gomez said he looked out his second floor window and saw the smoke. He immediately ran to get help.
“I ran out without shirt, without anything, pants, I ran to the fireman there. I said I need help. There is a fire in my house,” said Gomez.
Crews quickly arrived, but the billowing smoke was so thick it hid firefighters from sight. Frozen hydrants forced the fire department to pull a fifth alarm, as a precaution, to make sure they had enough water.
“It's East Boston. It’s the winter. Its sub freezing temps. We hit them quick, we were here pretty quick,” said Dep. Chief Richard Dibenedetto.
Two people went to the hospital with smoke inhalation. Everyone inside the building made it out and some made sure to grab their pets. Others covered their young children in blankets.
“I was praying like why is this happening to me. Very scary, scary,” said Gomez.
The Red Cross assisted the people living inside.
“We are giving them money for food for the week and clothing and seasonal garments as well,” said Lisa Contee of the American Red Cross.
Fire investigators believe the fire started on the third floor, but still don’t know the cause.
Parts of the sidewalk were still blocked off because water from the fire hoses made them icy.
In total 23 people live in the building. They don’t know if they’ll ever be allowed back inside.