PORTLAND, MAINE–In Maine’s worst fire in over 30 years, five people are dead after their apartment building in Portland burned early Saturday morning. Several other people were still unaccounted for, authorities said. Another victim was badly burned and taken to Boston, where he’s in critical condition.
The fire broke out shortly after 7 a.m. at 20-24 Noyes St., which is a two-family apartment house that neighbors have complained hasn’t been maintained well for years.
There were six tenants of the apartment at 20 Noyes St. and two escaped the fire. All of the victims died in the apartment at 20 Noyes St., authorities said.
Firefighters and investigators were unable to enter the house for hours after the fire was reported at 7:17 a.m.
Flames could be seen shooting out of the roof during the height of the blaze and by midday, bystanders – many of them from the neighborhood – surrounded the scene.
Carol Schiller, president of the University Neighborhood Organization, said the property has been run down for some time and she emailed the city in May, asking for it to be inspected because of the debris outside.
She said the city told her a fire inspector had been assigned the case, but she doesn’t know what the outcome was.
For updates and more information, see http://www.pressherald.com/2014/11/01/portland-fire-sends-one-to-hospital/