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Fire displaces tenants of Kingston apartment building

Investigators are still looking into the cause of a Kingston apartment fire on Saturday night. No one was injured, but one unit was gutted, while smoke caused major damage to the second floor of the building.

Nearly 10 people have been displaced after a fire caused major damage to the second floor of an apartment building in Kingston.

The incident happened around 11:30 p.m. Saturday. Kingston firefighters were called to a fire at the four-storey building on Adelaide Street. No one was hurt, but one unit was entirely gutted by the flames.

“On arrival, our crews did notice smoke and flame from the unit and were able to quickly extinguish the fire,” said Insp. Clinton Debroy with Kingston Fire and Rescue.

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The fire affected a number of residents on the second floor, where the fire occurred. The Canadian Red Cross stepped in and is helping those affected with shelter and food.

Tanya Arsenault lives in the building and helped out with evacuating tenants safely.

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“The alarms were going off. I was screaming in the hallways for people to get out, that this wasn’t a drill,” she said.

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More than 70 people live in the apartment building and all were evacuated as a result of the blaze.

Debroy says his team is still investigating what might have caused the fire but that a number of items inside the affected unit fuelled the flames. The fire was contained in the aparment, but officials say it became a problem when the door was opened, bringing smoke into the corridor.

“What it did was it entered the hallway and it had such a high intensity of heat that the upper layer of it melted the smoke detector,” he explained.

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“The entire hallway from end to end is charred and blackened and smells very heavily of smoke,” said Arsenault.

Neighbours say the blaze may have been sparked by a grease fire, but Debroy says it could have been a variety of reasons.

“We couldn’t speak to that. We are examining all different types of evidence we have gathered on site,” said Debroy.

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Officials say the fire caused more than $150,000 in damage.

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