7 forced out when fire badly damages Norwich apartment house

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Norwich — A fire badly damaged a three-unit apartment building at 88 Otrobando Ave. in the city's Yantic section early Sunday afternoon.

There were no injuries in the fire, which began about 12:30 p.m. and displaced seven people. Yantic Deputy Fire Chief Bernard Herz said a dog and cat perished in the fire.

He added that firefighters were able to save other pets that belonged to the residents. The Red Cross responded to the scene to assist the displaced residents.

Brittany Noble, who said she has a friend who lives on the second floor of the building, said she feared for her friend's pets, which she thought were still inside.

Herz said the fire was thought to have started in one of the two second-floor apartments where Noble said her friend lives.

Norwich Mayor Peter Nystrom said he was driving along Otrobando Avenue when he spotted smoke coming from the roof of the three-story house. He said he knocked on the door of the first-floor apartment, alerted the residents and told them they had to get out. He said he then went up a staircase to one of the second-floor apartments, knocked on the door and could see flames inside.

31 members of the Yantic, Mohegan, East Great Plains, Taftville, Franklin, Bozrah, Laurel Hill and the City of Norwich fire departments all responded, along with city police and ambulances. Firefighters used two ladder trucks to cut holes in the attic and extinguish the fire.

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