ANDOVER — Fire Chief Michael Mansfield reports that Andover Fire Rescue responded to a fire this morning inside a one-family house that firefighters later determined had no working smoke alarms.
At 10:31 a.m., Andover firefighters were dispatched to 14 Sunset Rock Road for a report of a fire after the residents were alerted to the danger by a neighbor who saw smoke coming from their home. Upon arrival, firefighters observed heavy smoke and fire coming from the roof area above the third floor of the residence.
Firefighters immediately began an aggressive interior attack and called for a second alarm, which brought mutual aid support from the Tewksbury and Lawrence Fire Departments to the scene. Crews were able to extinguish the fire within an hour of arriving on scene. Two Andover firefighters were transported to Lawrence General Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
Andover Fire Rescue determined during its response that there were no working smoke alarms inside the residence, which likely prolonged the amount of time the fire burned before the residents were made aware of the danger by a neighbor. There were no injuries to the residents who were home at the time.
“Today’s fire is a clear example of why it’s critical to have working smoke alarms throughout your home so that you can be alerted to danger as soon as possible,” Chief Mansfield said. “It’s extremely fortunate that a neighbor spotted the smoke and warned the residents inside. If this fire had occurred overnight, with nobody around to see the danger and no smoke alarms to alert people inside the home, then the outcome could have been tragic.”
The Haverhill, Lawrence, North Reading and Methuen Fire Departments provided station coverage in Andover during the incident.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation by the Office of the State Fire Marshal. Andover Fire Rescue estimates the cost of the damage to the home to be approximately $400,000.