MANCHESTER, N.H. (AP) — A fast-moving, pre-dawn fire in a three-story apartment building in New Hampshire left two adults and two children dead, officials said Monday.
The Manchester Fire Department began getting 911 calls on the fire at sunrise Monday. Responders arrived to find heavy fire at the building and removed the first two victims within one minute, firefighters said.
“The fire was progressing so quickly that we had to retreat to get supportive hose lines to advance further,” District Chief Mike Gamache said. Within five to six minutes, the other two victims were brought out, he said.
Two people died at the scene, and two were pronounced dead at the hospital. No further information was released on the victims; autopsies were scheduled for Tuesday.
“It’s tragic for us, it’s tragic for the families, it’s tragic for the neighborhood and the city,” Manchester Fire Chief Daniel Goonan said.
One firefighter was treated for a leg injury and released from the hospital.
Goonan said seven of the 12 apartments were occupied. The Red Cross was assisting some of the occupants. In all, 30 people were evacuated.
The cause of the fire is under investigation. Goonan said there was heavy fire coming from the rear porches when firefighters arrived.
The building is in Manchester’s east side, which is a mix of apartment buildings, restaurants, and small businesses. By midmorning, the entire top of the building appeared charred, with windows burned out on the third floor.
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