Early Thursday evening firefighters battled a fire in a group home for the elderly on Belvoir Avenue.
According to East Ridge Fire Chief Mike Williams, the call came in at about 6:30 that the Senior Saints Assisted Living home at 704 Belvoir Avenue was burning. When police arrived, heavy smoke was coming from the roof of the house.
A witness said he was driving to his home on Arnold Avenue when he saw smoke coming from the roof of the two-story brick structure.
Dustin Donovan said he stopped the car and ran to the home to alert the residents and people inside to the fire. Donovan said one of several nurses who tend to the elderly residents came to the door and said that everything was alright, that there was a worker inside tending to electrical issues.
“I told the nurse, ‘you don’t understand, you’ve got to get everybody out right now,'” Donovan said.
Donovan said firefighters arrived within minutes of the 911 call being made. He said that the firefighters were delayed in getting water hoses laid because of heavy traffic on Belvoir Avenue.
Chief Williams said when firefighters arrived they started an interior attack but crews were pulled out due to the fire progressing. ERFD set up a ladder, and along with crews using hand lines extinguished the fire. Mutual Aid fire companies were called to assist with manpower and to cover the city while battling this fire.
Officials said as firefighters battled the Belvoir conflagration, a second fire was reported in an apartment building at 100 Dorrah Lane. Mutual Aid companies responded to that address to find a small fire which caused minimal damage.
Officials said no injuries were reported at either fire, and the Red Cross and Angel EMS assisted with placing and transporting of the occupants of Senior Saints Assisted Living.
The cause of the fire is under investigation, Chief Williams said.
Tri-State Mutual Aid Companies that responded were: Catoosa Engine, Catoosa Ladder, Rossville Engine, Fort Oglethorpe Ladder, Red Bank Engine, Hwy 58 Engine, Tri Community Engine, Hamilton County Rescue air truck, Hamilton County Rehab Truck, Angel EMS Ambulance and Angel EMS bus.