Bridge Street fire deemed accidental

by Town Reminder


Bridge Street fire deemed accidental
Caused by ember from plumber’s torch
By Kristin Will
Staff Writer

SOUTH HADLEY – A plumber “sweating pipes” last night accidentally caused Monday’s fire which claimed 20-24 Bridge Street, according to Fire District No. 1 Chief Robert Authier.
The State Fire Marshall’s office investigated the incident Tuesday morning and determined the cause was accidental.
According to Authier, a plumber was working in the former Domino’s Pizza one-story brick building torching pipes. The building had a drop ceiling and an ember from the torch “must have take off and gotten into the ceiling,” said Authier.
The plumber left between 5 and 5:30 p.m.
At 7:52 p.m., firefighters were called to 20-24 Bridge Street for the reported fire.
Work crews are supposed to conduct a fire watch following such a plumbing job to make sure no embers ignite.
Authier said the fire must have smoldered for a bit before breaking out.
Initially, firefighters fought the fire from inside the building as well as on the roof, however, the flames quickly got out of control and the situation became too dangerous. Firefighters then fought the battle from outside, directing hoses on the front and rear of the building, as well as the roof.
South Hadley Fire District No. 1 and No. 2 were on scene. Holyoke’s fire department responded via mutual aid for station coverage.
Firefighters were on scene until approximately 9 a.m. Tuesday morning.