Fire crews battle flames in Rotterdam Junction

June 03, 2019 11:15 PM

ROTTERDAM JUNCTION – The American Red Cross is aiding six people who are left without a home after a fire ripped through their apartment building on Main Street in Rotterdam Junction Monday afternoon. 

Fire Chief Shawn Taylor of Rotterdam Junction District One said the call came in for the fire around 2:30 Monday afternoon.

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"They had a pretty good hit on it, but the wind picked up,” said Chief Taylor. “These buildings are so old, this is a 100 plus year old house, its construction didn't really help too much. It's so boxy and built so oddly that it really hindered trying to get into the areas we needed to get into."

Around six different fire companies responded to the fire, and around 100 firefighters were on scene. Four apartments make up the building and Chief Taylor said everyone was able to make it out safely. Most of the damage was to the second floor. Taylor said the first floor mainly suffered water damage. Taylor said it’s likely the building could be a total loss.

“Three quarters of the roof has come down on the second story of the building,” said Taylor. We'll leave that up to the building inspectors to really get in there and get a handle on all that."

With wind fueling the fire, firefighters worked for around four hours to put out the flames. Two firefighters were taken to the hospital for minor injuries.

“We had one steam burn to an arm and we had an elevated cardiac, which everyone is okay right now,” said Chief Taylor.

With the long battle tiring for firefighters, Chief Taylor said thanks to a good mutual aid system they were able to get help from all over Schenectady County.

"In a big fire like that you need a lot of guys,” said Taylor. “We were able to get them. Everybody is battling with firemen right now, trying to get certified firemen and we pulled from the whole county so it helps us out.”

Taylor said fire investigators are working to figure out what caused the fire.


WNYT Staff

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