Seven Springfield firefighters are being recognized for saving lives during a deadly apartment building fire in March.
On the morning of March 18, the firefighters of Ladder Truck 3 from the White Street fire station were the first to get to 49 Belmont Avenue, where smoke and flames were coming out the windows, people were trapped inside.
“They helped the internal stairway, so people could start to evacuate from the upper floors,” said Springfield Fire Commissioner B.J. Calvi. “Unfortunately people did jump, but they were able to get the fire knocked down quickly so people could evacuate.”
A father and his two children perished in the fire, but the seven men from the White Street station are credited with taking the crucial steps that prevented more loss of life. Lessons learned during their intensive training at the firefighting academy.
“The major step they learn is everyone kept calm,” Commissioner Calvi told 22News. “They did their job like professionals. Everybody did an outstanding job that day.”
Their unit earned a certificate of commendation for their response during that catastrophe on a Sunday morning in March. Agencies including the Western Massachusetts Red Cross have assisted the dozens of tenants made homeless that day.