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No Injuries & Minimal Damage in Mohawk Forest Fire

By Jack Guerino
iBerkshires Staff
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The Fire Department responded to the report of a fire at Mohawk Forest that displaced a family and their dog.
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The fire was largely out by the time firefighters arrived but they had to determine it was completely doused and had not spread into the walls. 
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Firefighters responded to a fire in a Mohawk Forest apartment that was already mostly extinguished by the time they arrived.
 
The call came over the scanner just after noon Friday. Dispatch reported that smoke was seen bellowing out of apartment 34.
 
"We were right on scene and there was a little light haze of smoke down near the front door," Lt. Brent Lefebvre said. "We went into the building and found just some charring and some embers above the stove in the cabinets. We put it out with a water extinguisher."
 
Fire Chief Stephen Meranti said the occupant appeared to have left a stove burner on but at the time of the call was not in the apartment. He said heat detectors were triggered along with the internal smoke detectors that rang throughout the building.
 
An on-duty maintenance man noticed the alarm, entered the apartment, took the pan off the stove and doused the fire with some water, the chief said.
 
Although he was successful in containing the fire to just the kitchen and had it largely extingured before the trucks arrived, Meranti said the department never recommends that anyone ever enter a possible burning building. 
 
"The guy did a good job and by doing that did contain it to that area but putting yourself in that situation without protection — we do not recommend it," he said.
 
Meranti said people should call 911 and only direct firefighters toward a blaze.
 
Lefebvre said firefighters checked to see if the fire spread through the walls but determined the damage was really concentrated near the stove. 
 
Meranti said the occupant will stay with family until the damage is repaired by Mohawk Forest staff. There was a dog in the apartment that was rescued.
 
North Adams Police and the Wire and Alarm Division, and Northern Berkshire EMS were on scene.
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