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Apartment fire displaces Main Street residents in East Lyme

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East Lyme — Residents of the apartment building at 308 Main St. were displaced in an early morning electrical fire Tuesday.

Niantic Fire Department Chief Jim Barone said firefighters responded to a call about smoke in the building and arrived to find one resident coming out the door and light smoke in the hallways and stairways.

Dispatch got the call at 4:16 a.m. and the first trucks arrived at 4:25 a.m., according to a police report.

Barone said firefighters evacuated the rest of the residents, so two members of the East Lyme Police Department could take them to the nearby police station as a temporary shelter. Firefighters then found an electrical fire in the utility room adjacent to the stairway, according to Barone. He described the burn damage to the building as "not overly extensive" but said damage to electrical and plumbing components was significant.

Barone said the residents would not be able to return until electrical power and water were restored. He said the owner of the building was on the scene immediately.

Police Chief Mike Finkelstein said most of the residents are staying with family, while the American Red Cross put up a few in a local hotel. A Red Cross spokesman said the organization provided services for five people.

Also responding were Flanders Fire Department, Old Lyme Fire Department and Old Lyme Ambulance, with a truck from Waterford on standby in the event of another fire in the area.

e.regan@theday.com

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