Five Cranston homes impacted in heavy fire, one collapsed

CRANSTON, R.I. (WLNE)- A Cranston multi-family home collapsed to the ground after being consumed by heavy flames early Friday morning.

At least a dozen fire trucks responded to the fire on Lincoln Avenue just after 3 a.m., and crews spent five hours battling the flames.

Cranston Police tells ABC6 that the fire originally started in a home behind the multi-family.

According to Mayor Kenneth Hopkins, the fire was likely ignited by an outside heater warming up cages of animals. Officials say several animals died, including cats, ferretts, and rabbits.

While tackling the fully involved home, the wind blew the flames, causing the fire to spread.  Mayor Hopkins says that a total of five houses were impacted.

All residents were evacuated before the fire and no one was injured.

Neighbors along Lincoln Avenue watched the blaze in shock, some even waking up from the smell of the heavy smoke.

Julio Garcia lives just two houses down from the scene, his home was spared.

“Im glad there’s no wind. but you never know, when those things happen, anything can happen. so i just waked up and stayed alert to see whats going on,” says Garcia.

Now nearly the whole neighborhood is without electricity or power in the midst of the storm.

“I have no gas, no electricity. Its cold,” says Garcia. “We have a gas fire place. no electricity so were heating water on the stove to get some coffee. its a pain.”

Despite all the challenges, Mayor Hopkins called the situation lucky and praising the firefighters for their heroic work that likely saved lives.

“We’re lucky. Believe it or not, we’re lucky. These houses are so close together, there’s a lot of people living in them, and we got them all out safe,” says Mayor Hopkins.

Residents who have been displaced can meet at Econo Lodge on Reservoir Avenue for housing needs, according to police.

Firefighters are still battling hot spots, and the State Fire Marshal is on scene.

State Fire Marshal investigator James Given tells ABC6 that he hasn’t seen a scene like this in quite some time, and will continue with the investigation once the scene clears.

A crane is being brought in to clean up what is left of the collapsed home.

Crews say this will be an all day response.

Check back to ABC6 for the latest updates.

Categories: Cranston, News, Rhode Island