Couple at Harborside Inn ‘left everything behind’ in the fire

NEW SHOREHAM, R.I. (WLNE) — One couple staying in the Harborside Inn Friday left $5,000 worth of belongings behind as the building burnt throughout the night.

The massive fire on prompted a state of emergency on the island.

No one was hurt in the fire. Roughly 60 visitors at the inn were relocated to schools, churches, and other locations for the night.

“I’m still a little shaky about it,” said Jack, who stayed at the inn with his girlfriend Friday night. “We went into the hallway and there was smoke everywhere… Thankfully, the exit was right there.”

Jessica Willi, executive director of the Block Island Tourism Council, told ABC 6 the area around building downtown is still active with emergency crews.

She added, “We’re asking people to avoid that area if on island. There is still a lot of personnel getting things cleaned up. The structure is severely damaged. So, I’m sure it will be quartered off for a while until it’s safe.”

Willi also mentioned they are dealing with power and water shortages on the island. The fate of the building — including Harborside Inn and shops below — is unknown at this time.

Willi explained, “There’s a ton of history in that building, possibly more than anywhere else on Block Island. So, it’s a really sad day.”

Dozens of tourists returned from the island from the ferry at Point Judith.

Jack finished, “We’re alive, things can be replaced.”

Ferries out of Point Judith will be back to their original scheduling Sunday.

Categories: News, Rhode Island