When firefighters left department headquarters on Grand Avenue to respond to a call, they saw smoke billowing up into the air just a couple blocks away.
“We could see the smoke,” said Acting Deputy Chief Lou Rivera, who responded to the fire Friday night at 265 Orange St., right next to Christy’s pub.
Rivera said the single-alarm fire started in a basement bedroom, which was completely destroyed in the blaze. No one was injured.
Firefighters got the 911 call at 9:27 p.m., Rivera said. When they arrived on scene just moments later, the fire was “blowing out of the back Bilco doors,” Rivera said.
Four engines and two trucks responded to the fire. Firefighters quickly knocked down the blaze.
No one was in the basement apartment at the time of the fire, Rivera said. Five people live in the unit. The roommates host occasional DIY music performances in their living room, a performance space called Taco Hut.
Rivera said firefighters didn’t yet know how the fire started. The basement bedroom was “a complete loss,” he said. The whole basement suffered fire and water damage, Rivera said.
Noah Rodriguez, standing on the sidewalk across from the scene of the fire, said he lives in the apartment. He said he has one of two basement bedrooms, not the one in the rear where the fire apparently started.
Rodriguez said he was working at Cafe Nine when he got a call at 9:36 p.m. that his roommate’s dog, Roxie, was out. He headed to the apartment and discovered firefighters were there dousing a blaze.
Rodriguez said he was worried about his cat, Furball.
“We saw him and think he got out,” Rivera told Rodriguez. He said firefighters were trying to find the cat.