Groton City firefighters quickly extinguish fire

A firefighter opens a hole in the roof to vent smoke as crews extinguish a fire at 35 Crouch St. in Groton Monday, March 20, 2017. (Sean D. Elliot/The Day)

Groton — Firefighters quickly extinguished an early Monday afternoon blaze on Crouch Street, according to Groton City Deputy Fire Chief Robert Tompkins.

Tompkins said it took about 10 minutes to put out the main fire in the multifamily complex at 35 Crouch St.

A resident of the affected top-floor apartment on the right side of the building, who identified himself only as Ravi, said when he flipped the switch in his bathroom, the ventilator fan caught fire.

He called 911 about 1:25 p.m. and went to the other apartments in the building to tell the residents to evacuate.

Tompkins said because electricity for the whole building comes from the right side, the fire compromised power for all of its residents.

On scene, several residents of the building watched firefighters work but declined to comment.

One, who said he lived in the lower level of the left side of the building, said he thought for a period of time the fire "was coming over."

Ravi's apartment suffered significant fire damage, as did the trusses above it. Tompkins said the roof might need to be replaced on the right side of the building.

Other units suffered smoke and/or water damage, he added.

Tompkins said there are 12 units in the building, which is part of Peppertree Garden Apartments. Tompkins wasn't sure how many residents were displaced but said the Red Cross would be assisting them. 

Ravi and three friends who were with him at the time of the fire reported no injuries.

Tompkins also said no other residents or firefighters were injured.

In addition to Groton City, Poquonnock Bridge, Old Mystic and Naval Submarine Base firefighters were on scene. Members of the Noank Fire Department covered for Groton City while its members were occupied. Lawrence + Memorial Hospital paramedics and the Salvation Army also responded.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

l.boyle@theday.com

A firefighter smashes a second-story window to vent smoke as crews extinguish a fire at 35 Crouch St. in Groton Monday, March 20, 2017.   (Sean D. Elliot/The Day)
A firefighter smashes a second-story window to vent smoke as crews extinguish a fire at 35 Crouch St. in Groton Monday, March 20, 2017. (Sean D. Elliot/The Day)

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