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UPDATE: All Safe After Large Fire on Orchard Street

Firefighters knocked down a two-alarm fire Sunday afternoon.

All occupants - incuding pets - are accounted for after a two-alarm fire consumed the front of a 2.5-story home at 67 Orchard St. early Sunday evening. 

Calls for the fire, which came in just before 5:30 p.m., brought mutual aid from Revere, Medford and Everett fire departments. 

The fire was declared knocked down about 45 minutes later, at 6:15 p.m. 

Several witnesses reported hearing 3 or more explosions related to the fire, though their origin was not immediately clear. Firefighters were later commanded to evacuate the building due to concerns about the structure's stability. 

The damage wasn't limited to just 67 Orchard - the siding on some of their neighbor's homes appeared to be melting and falling off of the exterior. 

James Labbe, captain of the local Salvation Army chapter, said he spoke to the victims. 

"They were very stressed and upset, but with the assistance of the Deputy (Fire Chief) we were able to determine that they had a place to go to and at this point in time needed no assistance," he said. 

According to a friend of the family, only one resident was home at the time of the incident. 

Joe Gray July 15, 2012 at 09:46 PM
Billowing clouds of smoke came past my house and we're hearing what sounds like occasional explosions. Close.
Joe Gray July 15, 2012 at 09:46 PM
Another big explosion. What the heck is going on?
Joe Gray July 15, 2012 at 09:59 PM
Heard the fire engines coming in from across town to deal with this fire in ward 6. Would have only been a couple blocks(and seconds) away if we had our old firehouse back by Trafton. Those days are gone it seems. Can't wait till they finish whatever new firehouse, that they are going to give us somewhere nearby
AnnieOMalden July 15, 2012 at 10:31 PM
Unconfirmed initial report is the window air conditioner unit exploded and caused the fire. The electric wire from the street was down and crackling on the sidewalk area. God bless this family.
Michael B Elvale July 15, 2012 at 10:32 PM
Joe, ANYBODY who can do anything about Maplewood not having a fire station does not really give a flying ducks behind that Maplewood does not have one........The "new East side fire station" was scrapped AGAIN! Just wait till Septemeber 2013, grab the buckets.....
James Labbe July 16, 2012 at 12:14 AM
Update on the fire on Orchard Street Malden Mass- The Red Cross had made initial contact with me and asked me to go on scene to begin interviewing the survivors. I arrived on scene and the fire was knocked down. I spoke to the Deputy and was instructed to provide hydration and snacks alongside Cataldo Ambulance. The team showed up with Gatorade and snacks. I then proceeded to locate the survivors and interview them. They were very stressed and upset but with the assistance of the Deputy we were able to determine that they had a place to go to and at this point in time needed no assistance. I contacted Red Cross and made them aware of the situation and then provided Channel 25 with the same update. Lieutenant James Labbe of The Salvation Army
Marc Levine July 16, 2012 at 01:04 AM
God Bless them indeed!!! Fundraiser in the works down the road?????
Phe July 16, 2012 at 11:17 AM
OK. I heard those explosions too but frankly, I thought that someone was going nuts with fireworks again. :( So glad to know that everyone's safe. If a fundraiser or something is in the works, definitely will contribute.
Rescue Us July 16, 2012 at 01:17 PM
Come on Mr. Mayor, can't you help us on the east side of the city? It's time we got a new fire staion. WE NEED IT & SAFETY FIRST! Can you not see that? It's nice that we got a brand new FREE fire station in Revere but it doesn't do us much good all the way in another city. You are spending money everywhere else so how about here too? We need better and quicker responses and I don't want to have to worry about my house burning down. I'm glad everyone got out safe and I'm willing to help with a fundraiser for the family.
BostonUrbEx July 16, 2012 at 02:09 PM
Isn't there a fire station on Laurel St?
Susan Danico July 16, 2012 at 02:15 PM
We absolutely need a new fire station in Malden. I've been a resident of Malden my entire life and my family still lives in Malden. It would be nice to have our mayor actually do something for Malden residents. Recently the house next door to us burned down and there was real fear that our house would catch on fire also. Luckily the families that lived in the house ended up being safe also. My prayers go out to the family on Orchard Street. It's so traumatic to lose your home but luckily no one was hurt.
Phe July 16, 2012 at 03:09 PM
It was closed over a year ago and operations were moved to a joint station in Revere.
Malden Resident July 16, 2012 at 04:45 PM
I'm very happy that the residents of that home are all safe. Very scary indeed, and I concur that we need a fire station in the Forestdale / Maplewood area again. I worry regularly about a fire happening to my home or to our neighborhood. Between the congested streets, people parking where they're not supposed to (with no ticketing from the city) and the water pressure issues from the recent water main replacement programs, if a figure happened near High Rock, I fear the home would be a complete loss. Again, I am very happy everyone is safe, and that is the important thing, but I also hope that something is done with regard to the fire station issue before someone loses a life. This is the second big fire in this area in recent months that could have had less damage if there was a closer unit to respond.
Joe Gray July 16, 2012 at 04:46 PM
I wasn't aware that the long planned fire station for the east side was scrapped again. I have a couple buckets and a strong throwing arm. If anything happens, I'll take care of my house till help arrives....
R.Doucot July 16, 2012 at 07:33 PM
Broadway Sq./Salem St. vacant land: ideal for fire station: behind "red dome" former gas station: half way between Linden and Maplewood. Easy access. This property is for sale.
david mokal July 16, 2012 at 08:07 PM
JOE I had a fire in Dec 7 2010 @ 11;00 PM AT NITE. Im off of Main Street on the Everett Line. The responce was excellent and the firemen couldnt be any better but it seems forever in your own mind. Just like you till help gets here I have 3 100 ft Hydraulic Hoses in Each closet hooked ready to go. You cant even see them. Made my own nozels each hose is 2500 psi stainless woven we use for Hydraulic lines on the rubbish trucks, Its aterrible thing to go through. A stupid discarded cigarett caught in the 2nd floor eves and poof. The hardest part is that your watching your house burn and everyone is pulling at you for board ups..Private estimators..all that crap and your house is still burning. Ah then the best part comes...after all and done your blessed insurance company who you have been with since 1971 and you never had a claim ever cancells you. Now they put you in a pool and charge you $1500 more. It never ends.
david mokal July 16, 2012 at 08:10 PM
We also had a fire station as well on Ashland Street behind what once was the Belmont School. I thing someone lives n it now. Conversion. Still has the big dooe in front.
RootBeerFloat July 16, 2012 at 10:12 PM
STOP VOTING FOR THE SAME PEOPLE OVER & OVER AGAIN & IT MIGHT HELP TO SOLVE SOME OF THE ISSUES. WARD 6 IS A MESS & HAS BEEN FOR THE LAST FEW YEARS & YET KINNON, IS STILL IN OFFICE. IF THE RESIDENTS TAKE CHARGE & GET THESE PPL OUT MAYBE THERE IS A CHANCE THINGS COULD CHANGE. WHAT HAS KINNON, DONE THAT IS WORTH HIM BEING IN OFFICE AS LONG AS HE HAS? SPADAFORA, ANDERSON, NESTOR, BUCCI THEY WERE A BUNCH OF HOWARDS KISS BUTTS. WITH HOWARD GONE THE CITY SHOULD HAVE A CHANCE, BUT NOW YOU JUST NEED TO VOTE THE REST OF OUT OFFICE. THERE ARE MANY LOCATIONS THAT COULD BE USED (THE MC FADDEN MANOR~THAT THE CITY SO NICELY SHUT DOWN, BROADWAY PARK WOULD HAVE BEEN A GREAT LOCATION. HOW ABOUT THE VACANT VIDEO STORE ON EASTERN AVE & MAPLEWOOD ST? WHY NOT JUST FIX THE DAMN STATION IN MAPLEWOOD, I MEAN YOU COULD HAVE IF YOU DID NOT SELL A BUILDING THAT WAS PAID FOR TO THE MVCS. HOW ABOUT THE CONFLICT WITH KINNON BEING ON THE BOARD AT THE MVCS & YET BEING ON THE CITY COUNCIL? NO CONFLICTS THERE THOUGH (LAUGH). MAYBE WHEN ONE OF THESE SCAP BAGS WE HAVE IN OFFICE LOOSE THEIR HOME OR SEE A FAMILY MEMBER LOOSE A HOME SOMETHING WITH BE DONE ABOUT IT. NOTHING HAS BEEN DONE TO OR FOR MALDEN IN YEARS, BUT TAX THE RESIDENTS MORE, FIND LOOP HOLES AND MAKE US PAY FOR BAGS, RAISE WATER & PROPERTY TAX, ALLOW SLUMLORDS TO GET AWAY WITH THINGS & CREATE POSITIONS FOR FRIENDS....IF YOU GOT THAT 518,000 BACK WE SURE COULD HAVE FIXED THE MAPLEWOOD STATION OR EVEN FOUND A SMALL PLACE TO HOUSE THE FD IN THE MEANTIME
Carol J. Merletti July 17, 2012 at 12:44 AM
I agree that Malden desperately needs another fire station in the Maplewood / Forestdale area. Shame on our city for delaying this forever. I do not know who is behind delaying this, but someone needs to step up to the plate to get this going forward before a life or lives are lost! With regards to your comment RootBearFloat, about the theft at City Hall in the Treasurer’s Office, the $518,000 was not the only theft in that office. Why has everyone forgotten that? Doesn’t anyone remember that another story came out at the beginning of the year that it was discovered that more money was stolen? It happened under Howard’s watch (again), but was brought out in the open when Gary became Mayor. In the article, they refused to quote the amount taken THIS TIME. All that they stated was that they were putting cameras up on the outside door, and that they were not going to allow family members in the Treasurer’s Office anymore. (Which made me laugh at the time when I read it, because why would anyone bring their family members in the Treasurer’s Office?) After that story, we never heard anything more about it. Why? How much MORE was stolen? Was it one person or more? Was anyone fired? Was anyone arrested? Was the money given back? If you add this money to the $518,000, Malden could probably have a brand new fire station. Chris @ Patch, do you remember this story? Can you follow up on it? As tax payers, we have a right to know. Thanks.
stella July 17, 2012 at 01:58 AM
I would like to say thank you for an excellent job by the firefighters who put the fire out. They went above and beyond the call of duty. Great job
Carol J. Merletti July 17, 2012 at 02:00 AM
They always do Stella!
RootBeerFloat July 17, 2012 at 03:17 AM
The MFD always has done a great job. I hate to say this, but they are at a high risk with lack of staffing and additional departments, so it is not just the residents we have to continue to worry about. I do remember the other left, but if I was to vent as much as I would like I could type for days. Malden, was once the most beautiful place to live, now people run from there and can'tsell their houses fast enough.
Roger S July 17, 2012 at 02:28 PM
Good job MFD.
Joe Gray July 17, 2012 at 07:00 PM
Just got off the phone with the mayor's office. Starting some new registry to alert local businesses of catastrophic or similar events in the area that should be made known to local businesses. sounds like a good plan. I don't know anything about it yet, but I'm glad they called to include me.
Don July 17, 2012 at 07:13 PM
Why doesn't Malden build a cheap fire station. Like temporary quonset huts to house the equipment? This seems like a good stopgap measure to protect the Maplewood area better. The firefighters need to be taken care of, so this needs comforts and any thing necessary. I wouldn't want to place them in an uncomfortable "tent", but protection is needed. This would only be for a year or so until our leaders get it together. Can they?
Bill M July 19, 2012 at 08:02 PM
Yes they can...They should...and put a trailer for them to stay in right next to the hut . Excellent idea.

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