Firefighters respond to early morning fire in West Haven

A morning fire brought a neighborhood in West Haven to a standstill.
Published: Nov. 1, 2022 at 8:16 AM EDT|Updated: Nov. 1, 2022 at 12:23 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

WEST HAVEN, CT (WFSB) - A morning fire brought a neighborhood in West Haven to a standstill.

It happened Tuesday on Gilbert Street, which was closed for a portion of the morning. It has since reopened.

Massive flames shot out of the top of multi-story building.

No injuries were reported.

However, West Haven fire officials said at least 10 people were forced out of the home.

They also said it was going to take a lot of renovation to make it livable again.

A neighbor caught what looked like a dramatic inferno on camera. In it, a crowd of people could be seen wondering and hoping that everyone made it out.

Fire officials said the top floor of the home was fully engulfed by 6 a.m. That prompted a second alarm and an aerial response in a neighborhood crowded by trees and power lines.

“It’s very arduous work,” said Chief Michael Ternzio, West Haven Fire Department, Allingtown District. “It’s not just walking into the front door and squirting water.”

The aerial operator said that was a tough task.

“I’d say within 60 seconds closer to 30 seconds is the goal we want to achieve,” explained Chris Iadarola, West Haven firefighter paramedic.

Even more critical, the house had working smoke alarms.

Channel 3 spoke with one man who said he was at a party on the top floor when he had to escape.

“We got out because of the fire alarm,” said Manoj Kumar, who escaped the fire. “The good thing is that everyone is safe.”

One person was treated for smoke inhalation.

Even though it could take time to sort through the mess left behind, fire officials said one message was clear.

“Smoke alarm save lives,” Terenzio said. “That’s why we preach it every day, all day, all year.”

Building assessors need to come out make sure the structure is safe.

In the meantime, fire officials said the American Red Cross has been helping those who were displaced.