WESTFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - The streets surrounding Washington Street in Westfield will re-open Tuesday morning, following a fire at a large elderly housing complex late Monday night.
The fire at 16 Washington Street forced the evacuation of as many as 100 elderly residents.
Westfield Police Sgt. Robert Saunders told 22News that some of the residents have been allowed back into the building, which is known as the Washington House. Others spent the night at a temporary shelter at the Central Baptist Church on Elm Street.
Residents told 22News that just after 10:00 P.M., thick black smoke was seen coming from the upper floors.
Maureen Burns, a resident who slept through the initial alarms, told 22News she woke up and called 911.
"They asked me what apartment I live in and they said 'are you able to walk out?' and then they said they would get a fireman to knock on my door. So that's what happened," Burns said.
Resident Lucy Whitmore told 22News that this was not the first time she has seen a fire in the building. She said she remembers at least two other times.
"I saw a lot of smoke coming for the third or fourth floor. So much smoke that you couldn't tell what floor it was really on," said Whitmore.
Sgt. Joseph Maxton told 22News that at least two people were taken to the hospital because they inhaled some smoke.
There is still no word on what caused the fire.