Blowtorch Ignites Exterior of Pittsfield Home

By Brittany PolitoiBerkshires Staff
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PITTSFIELD, Mass. — The outside of a Second Street home was damaged on Monday after it was accidentally ignited with a blowtorch.

Firefighters responded to a reported structure fire at 125 Second St. at about 5:30 p.m. and found smoke and a blaze coming from the front of the single-family home.

With quick work, the first responders were able to keep the fire from penetrating the building.

Three engines and one ladder responded to the scene, with Engine 1 extinguishing the fire on the exterior, Engine 2 securing the water supply and checking to see if the fire had spread, and Engine 3 checking the interior of the home for fire.

One of the department's trucks assisted in containing the flame.

The cause was ruled accidental, as a property caretaker was removing weeds with a blowtorch and ignited the side of the building after coming too close. The siding was set on fire and it extended into the roof soffit area, growing inside of the siding and the wall boards from the ground to the roof.

No firefighter or civilian injuries were reported.

Damage can be seen to the structure in the front left corner and is contained there. Minimal water damage was reported.

The home was unoccupied and had a real estate agent's for sale sign in the front yard. A listing for the home could not be found online.

Built in 1880, it is a 2 1/2-story, wood frame single-family home.

Tags: structure fire,   

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West Side Mural Wishes for Greener Future

By Brittany PolitoiBerkshires Staff

The mural was commissioned by Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity. Director Carolyn Valli says murals bring 'a sense of hope.' The nonprofit is building two units of housing near the artwork.
PITTSFIELD, Mass. — A new mural on the West Side depicts a vision of a green community.
On Friday, the completion of "I Wish … For a Greener Future" by Hope Aguilera was celebrated by Central Berkshire Habitat for Humanity, which commissioned the piece as a part of neighborhood revitalization efforts.
Located on the B&P Auto Body Supply at the corner of Robbins Avenue and Columbus Avenue, it depicts a young boy making a wish on a dandelion with an eco-friendly landscape in the background. Within the mural is a farm, windmills to supply energy, an electric car, and a Bird scooter.
"Whenever you start thinking about doing a mural project or doing anything like this Habitat's perspective is 'What do we want to help the community do because it's something they want?'" CEO Carolyn Valli said.
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