Apartment fire extinguished on Pontiac Street


Kenneal Patterson

An apartment fire erupted at 59 Pontiac St.

Kenneal Patterson, news staff

At approximately 9:50 p.m. Monday, dozens of Mission Hill residents gathered outside of 59 Pontiac St. in shock as a three-and-a-half-story apartment building went up in flames. The Boston Fire Department, or BFD, was dispatched to the house to stop the fire from spreading. 

All residents made it out from the burning building, according to BFD District Chief Patrick Ellis. One resident jumped from the second story and was later taken to the hospital. No firefighters were injured, but 12 people and one dog were displaced.

As the Boston Police Department, or BPD, blocked off Pontiac Street, students and neighbors crowded behind caution tape to watch the scene unfold. 

“I actually got a notification on the Citizen App that notified us of a fire nearby,” said Camille Mercado, a third-year entrepreneurship major at Northeastern. “We decided to come out and see if we knew who was involved and what was happening.”

Fire Chief Patrick Ellis confirmed all residents escaped to safety. (Riley Robinson)

Mercado lives a few blocks away from Pontiac Street with her roommate, Shelby McIntosh. Both made their way down the street in order to get a closer look. 

“We walked over, and we were really surprised,” said McIntosh, a third-year political science major. “I’ve personally never seen a fire this big anywhere on the Hill.” 

Firefighters mounted ladders to climb to the roof and entered through an open window on the third floor. Some firefighters ventured into the burning building, and others stood on the ground with high-powered hoses. At one point, the blaze had completely engulfed the apartment, and residents expressed concern that it would spread to neighboring units.

McIntosh said that she didn’t know whether or not her lease agreement included fire damage protections. 

“We actually thought about that the other day because a similar fire happened on the floor above us, and I was like,  ‘Do we even have a fire extinguisher?’” she said. “And that is something I don’t know.” 

Zach Mazzie-Smith, a third-year pre-med student at Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Science, said that he was on his way home when he saw the fire trucks arrive.

Firefighters extinguished the blaze in almost less than an hour. (Riley Robinson)

“We got stopped on our way up, the usual way, so we had to go around some back roads, and we could see fire coming out of the windows of the third floor,” he said. 

Mazzie-Smith said that he wasn’t sure about the fire protections in his lease, or whether he had renter’s insurance. “I don’t know if these guys are going to get compensation for whatever was burnt,” Mazzie-Smith said.

By around 10:30 p.m., the fire was almost completely extinguished. Damages are currently estimated at over $750,000. The cause of the fire is unclear at this time.