Firefighters battle house blaze in Northampton

  • Firefighting crews from several surrounding towns responded to Northampton with mutual aid for a fire at 21 Ormand St. on Friday afternoon. STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

  • Firefighting crews from several surrounding towns responded to Northampton with mutual aid for a fire at 21 Ormand St. on Friday afternoon. STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

  • Northampton Fire Rescue responded to a fire at 21 Ormand St. in Northampton on Friday afternoon. STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

  • A Northampton firefighter cuts an opening in the attic space during a response to a fire at 21 Ormand St. on Friday. STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

  • Firefighters douse the roof and attic area from inside a home at 21 Ormand St. in Northampton during a response on Friday afternoon. STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

Staff Writer
Published: 10/15/2021 4:44:03 PM

NORTHAMPTON — A house fire caused significant damage to a single-family home at 21 Ormand St. on Friday afternoon.

Firefighters arrived on the scene at around 2:30 p.m. for a report of a structure fire. Northampton Assistant Fire Chief Andy Pelis said that smoke was pouring out of the house when they arrived, with some flames showing. No one was injured in the blaze, and Pelis said that the cause of the fire is still under investigation.

“It was tough because it was up in the attic,” Pelis said. “Hard to get to.”

Robert “Whitey” Wheeler lives in the house, and his son Richard Wheeler said that when he arrived on the scene the firefighters were in the process of knocking down the fire.

As for the condition of the house, Wheeler said it doesn’t look good.

“What the fire didn’t get, the soot got,” he said. “What the soot didn’t get, the water got.”

Wheeler said the family was in the process of contacting their insurance company and the American Red Cross for assistance. He said that from what he understood, his father had just arrived home when he heard somebody shouting that the house was on fire.

The person who alerted him to the fire appears to have been a teenage neighbor.

Rebecca Hawkins, the co-director of Wild Garden of Childhood Nursery across the street from the house, said she saw the kid run into the house without missing a beat.

“That was amazing,” she said.

Firefighters from Hadley, Easthampton and South Deerfield also responded to the scene to provide mutual aid.

Dusty Christensen can be reached at dchristensen@gazettenet.com.


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