Fire at construction site quickly controlled

Joe Gibbons
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The quick action of an security guard prevented what could have been a catastrophe at the construction site of the new condominiums being built on the former CEI Club property on Hamilton Avenue in St. John’s.

Making his rounds shortly after 8 p.m., he noticed smoke issuing from the building and discovered a fire burning in the basement. He quickly called 911 alerting firefighters.

St. John’s Regional Fire Department (SJRFD) Shift-Supt. Derek Chafe said, “we received a call of some smoke seen coming from the building and when our crews arrived they noticed there was some smoke on the fourth floor.

Chafe said firefighters found a small fire in the area of the basement.

“The building is under construction, so the smoke from that small fire went right up through the building and exited out through some openings on the fourth floor,” he said.

Chafe said the fire was very quickly extinguished and firefighters checked the entire building ensure the fire hadn’t extended.

As for a cause, Chafe said, “we’ve been speaking with their investigators, and they’re going to be on the scene shortly looking at it, and give us a determination after they’re finished as to exactly what happened.”

Damage was minimal, he said, noting “some construction material and equipment was damaged … but it was very minor.”

Chafe said there were no injuries sustained to any of the firefighters. He said the same shift of firefighters was on duty last Saturday, when they had to contend with three fires in the metro area.

Organizations: Regional Fire Department, SJRFD

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