Fire causes 26-storey building evacuation

<p>A kitchen fire that started in a high-rise smoked residents out of a 26-storey building last night.</p>




Tracey Tong/metro ottawa


Building resident Corrie Vendetti, left, and her friend, Rosemary Lever, were surprised to find the high-rise apartment building at 900 Dynes Rd. — inset — evacuated and firefighters, police and ambulances all on scene when they arrived at her home last night.

A kitchen fire that started in a high-rise smoked residents out of a 26-storey building last night.

A 47-year-old man suffered smoke inhalation injuries and more than 60 people were evacuated after a three-alarm fire broke out in apartment 201 at 900 Dynes Rd.

Shortly after 6 p.m., firefighters rescued an unconscious male from unit 201. The man, who regained consciousness at the scene, was treated for smoke inhalation and was transported to the Ottawa Civic Hospital, said Ottawa Paramedics team leader Jean Hamel.

“(The fire) was contained to the apartment but generated a tremendous amount of heat and smoke,” said District Chief Al Karkkainen. “The conditions were extremely difficult.”

The smoke reached to the top of the 26-storey-plus penthouse building. Firefighters escorted residents down the stairwell while asking residents not affected by smoke to stay in their apartments. The fire was under control about 45 minutes later.

“I’ve lived here for five years and I’ve never experienced anything like this,” said 18th-floor resident Bruna Panetta. “I still think it’s a safe place overall.”

Panetta also expressed worry for her pets. “I hope they can breathe.”

Two OC Transpo buses arrived on the scene afterwards to offer residents shelter from the cold.

“We get called when they evacuate apartments and it’s really cold out,” said transit supervisor Gord Hart.

Logan MacLaren and his roommate Chris Pickard said they walked out of their fifth-floor apartment. The friends, who attend Algonquin College, called friends they could stay with while the building was being evacuated.

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