On Wednesday, November 9th 2022, at approximately 14:30 Hours, the Lowell Fire Department began receiving calls for reports of a building fire at 700 Broadway St.
As companies responded it was noted that they could see a large black plume of smoke while in route. Upon arrival, firefighters found an auto body supply shop engulfed in flames. Crews quickly went to work to battle the flames.
A worker from the building notified firefighters that there was a large amount of chemicals stored in the building that were highly flammable and had explosive potential. Due to the extensive amount of fire multiple lines were put to into operation right away.
Command on scene struck a second and third alarm with in minutes of each other, bringing additional resources to the fire scene as well as mutual aid into the city for station coverage.
A mayday was transmitted by Lowell Engine 7 because their hose line lost water. As the fire grew in intensity, a flashover occurred inside the building, all companies were ordered to evacuate the building. Lowell Fire Alarm conducted a PAR (Personnel Accountability Report) ensuring that all firefighters successfully made it out of the building safely.
As companies transitioned to defensive tactics, numerous ladder trucks were put into operation setting up master streams. Due to the intense amount of fire and heat, the building began to collapse on the Alpha side. Hazmat technicians were also requested to the scene due to the chemicals inside the building.
As the incident progressed, firefighters were able to extinguish the blaze. Thankfully, all occupants of the building were able to get out safely. One firefighter suffered a minor injury and was treated on scene. Lowell Fire is currently investigating the fire.