South Portland fire displaces 6 residents

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SOUTH PORTLAND — Six tenants were displaced Sunday by a fire in a two-unit apartment building on Ocean Street.

No injuries were reported, but “several” pet cats perished in the blaze at 143 Ocean St., according to a Fire Department statement.

A department spokesman said the fire started on a stove on the second floor of the building. When firefighters arrived at about 10 a.m. heavy smoke was pluming from a second-floor kitchen window. 

“Crews encountered heavy fire in the kitchen and living areas,” Lt. Robb Couture said in a press release Sunday afternoon.  

The hydrant used to put out the blaze was already shoveled, Chief Kevin Guimond noted – something that has become a welcome trend for firefighters this winter. 

“The residents have been so good to us, and we have have been really thankful,” Guimond said. 

The fire was extinguished in less than half an hour, but firefighters had to return  around 6 p.m. because of “a little bit of smoldering insulation around the chimney,” Guimond said Monday morning. 

Both floors of the building sustained extensive fire and smoke damage. The displaced tenants are being assisted by the American Red Cross and the Portland Housing Authority. 

Alex Acquisto can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 106 or aacquisto@theforecaster.net. Follow Alex on Twitter: @AcquistoA

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South Portland firefighters returned to 143 Ocean St. on Sunday evening, where smoke coming from the building revealed a blaze extinguished earlier in the day had flared up.

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South Portland and Scarborough reporter for The Forecaster. Graduate of Western Kentucky University and the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies. Alex can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 106.