WESTBROOK, Conn. (WTNH)– One person has died after a fire broke out at a Westbrook condo complex Tuesday morning.
A red tarp now covers the entrance to that basement unit where a man lost his life. Tommy Aronson who lives in the building tells News8 the woman who lives right above that condo had come outside and saw the smoke.
“Screaming for help, help, help and saw smoke coming out of his window or something,” said Aronson.
Fire crews are working to determine the cause of the fatal fire that happened at the Ocean View Village Condominiums just after 7:30 a.m.
Aronson is among the twenty tenants evacuated from the condo complex on Economy Drive. Some of the residents were still sleeping.
“They had to kick the door in but that’s no big deal. Doors can be replaced,” said Sharon Ruzycki who owns one of the units in the complex.
Firefighters were able to contain the fire within minutes and then discovered the deceased male in his gutted basement condominium.
“It’s possible smoke inhalation most of them… most people in that type of situation cause it doesn’t look like he tried to escape,” said Westbrook Fire Chief Clifford Spencer.
At this time they do not believe the fire is suspicious. The state fire marshal is on scene searching through the charred rubble for the origin and cause of the fire, while the state medical examiner will try to determine the cause of death.
In the meantime, tenants have been allowed to go back into their apartments to get items they need for the day. Most of the other units suffered minimal or no damage.
“The apartment actually had double sheet rock on the ceiling which is great cause that helped contain it. All the studs underneath the sheet rock and everything were fine,” said Chief Spencer.
The Department of Transportation reported earlier that Route 1/ Boston Post Road was closed at Economy Drive due to that structure fire but the road has since reopened
Route 1 closed in #Westbrook at Economy Dr in the center of town bc of structure fire. Use Rt.153 to Rt.1 as alternate.
— Teresa Dufour (@teresadu4) February 28, 2017
The victim’s identity and the exact cause of death have not been released at this time.