Beech Street porch fire sparked by careless smoking

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MANCHESTER, NH — A porch fire on Beech Street took a toll on firefighters who were able to control the blaze before it did more damaged to the multi-family home.

According to District Chief Michael Gamache, the fire at 578 Beech St. was reported at 5 p.m. Crews arrived within three minutes to find fire on the first floor of the four-family three-story home, originating on the rear porch.

The porch was fully engulfed in flames, and fire was extending to the ceiling and into the adjacent apartment.  Fire crews rapidly extinguished the visible fire and then opened up the walls and ceiling to extinguish the remaining pockets of hidden fire.

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No injuries were reported. However, Gamache said the extreme heat conditions took a toll on firefighters, who managed to prevent the fire from extending into the living areas of the home, allowing all occupants to return to their apartments.

The cause of the fire was determined to be accidental due to the careless disposal of smoking materials. Damage is estimated at $10,000.