New London firefighters battle Sunday night house fire

New London firefighters battle the blaze at 91 Squire St. on Sunday night. (Mary Biekert/The Day)
New London firefighters battle the blaze at 91 Squire St. on Sunday night. (Mary Biekert/The Day)

New London -- City firefighters extinguished a fire in a two-family home at 91 Squire St. that broke out just before 7:30 p.m. Sunday and caused extensive damage to the upper two floors.

New London Fire Chief Tom Curcio said the people who live in the house and their dogs all escaped. The owner of the home declined to comment. 

As of 8:25 p.m. flames had been extinguished and firefighters were entering the home. Squire Street and a part of Ocean Avenue were closed.

Neighbor Cameron Lewis and his friend Stephanie Warren said the owner of the home told them that an unattended incense stick on a second-floor porch had fallen over and ignited a table full of papers while he was inside cooking. Both said they were alerted to the fire by the sound of windows exploding.

"I heard the pop and that's when we went running to help my neighbors," Lewis said, as he and nearly 100 other onlookers watched as firefighters fought the blaze.

Lewis said the man who owned the building lived on the second floor with his partner and dog. A young family of four lived on the ground floor with their dog.

Firefighters from New London, Waterford, Poquonnock Bridge, Mohegan Tribe, Norwich and the Naval Submarine Base all responded. Ambulance personnel from New London, Waterford and Groton also responded.      

Due to a live wire running from the home, power to Squire Street had been shut down and a gas line running into the home was also secured, Curcio said.

m.biekert@theday.com

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