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Fire forces evacuation of 7-unit building in Halifax

Halifax Fire crews responded to a report of a fire at Chebucto Road and Connaught Avenue, around 9:40 a.m. on Friday, after several residents reported smelling and seeng smoke in their homes. Graeme Benjamin

Halifax fire crews have put out a fire inside a three-storey seven-unit building on the corner of Chebucto Road and Connaught Avenue, according to the fire chief.

The crews responded to a report of smoke in the building around 9:40 a.m. Friday, says Chief Lloyd Currie.

“It smelled smoky for a while but they’re doing construction downstairs so I didn’t think anything of it,” says building resident Francis Waters. “Then I went to my washroom and the heater in my washroom was smoking up… Tons of smoke.”

Five minutes later, Waters and his neighbours were evacuated, he says.

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Connie Hong, who has lived in the building since 1997, says nothing like this has happened before.

She says construction workers in the basement apartment were drilling through the concrete foundation and hit wood inside a wall. “That’s what sparked the fire, it was inside the walls.”

Read more: Halifax police investigating suspicious fire on Inglis Street

However, the fire chief says the cause is still undetermined.

He says the fire was difficult to get to, and crews will remain on-scene for another few hours.

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The building sustained a fair amount of damage, Currie says. “There’s fire damage, smoke and water damage.”

Residents haven’t been able to grab their belongings yet, but crews will help them do that once it is safe, Currie says.

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