Couple dead, boy among injured in Mass. condo fire

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Associated Press

Posted on January 6, 2013 at 7:31 PM

Updated Sunday, Jan 6 at 7:36 PM

CHELMSFORD, Mass. (AP) — Fire tore through a northeastern Massachusetts condominium building, killing a couple in their late 60s or early 70s and injuring four of their relatives, including a 7-year-old boy who suffered serious burns, the state's fire marshal said Sunday.

The fire in Chelmsford began at about 11 p.m. Saturday. State Fire Marshal Stephen said he believes the fire started accidentally in the couple's home on the top floor of the four-story building, one of several in the complex.

The victims' names haven't been released. Coan said the man who died used a wheelchair, which impeded efforts to get him out of the condo.

Fire officials said two adults and two children related to the couple were visiting them when the fire began. The boy was flown by helicopter to a Boston hospital to be treated for serious burns, while the others were taken to local hospitals. The boy's condition wasn't available Sunday.

Coan said firefighters rescued several other residents of the top floor from their balconies.

Michael Schwartz told The Lowell Sun that he and his wife were watching a movie in their bedroom when they heard a commotion, saw the fire trucks and smelled smoke.

"We couldn't get out because the whole hallway was filled with smoke," Schwartz said. "We had to be rescued over the balcony."

Coan said the cause of the fire was being investigated.

It was the third fatal fire in Massachusetts since Friday. Accidental fires killed a 70-year-old man in Winchendon on Friday evening and a 15-year-old girl in Holyoke on Saturday, officials said.

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