Fire displaces 33 at Camden facility

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CAMDEN — Thirty-three residents were displaced from Valehaven Community Residence, an assisted living facility, on Main Street after a fire and subsequent smoke and water damage — severely damaged the facility Friday night.

Camden Fire Department received a call for 128 Main St. at about 9:30 p.m.

On arrival, Camden Chief Brian Christmas said there was a working fire visible from a second-story bedroom of the three-story structure. Christmas said initial reports indicated that there were two people missing from the second floor, but they were later located and brought to safety.

Florence, McConnellsville, and Taberg volunteer fire companies responded with mutual aid at 9:38 p.m., with North Bay coming to the scene approximately four minutes later. Camden Ambulance remained on stand-by.

The chief said between 45-50 firefighters total battled the blaze through an interior attack, which took about 45 minutes before it was deemed under control.

“There was a sprinkler system that had activated, which really helped the firefighting efforts,” Christmas said.

State Emergency Medical Services and the county fire coordinator also assisted at the scene, the chief said.

No injuries were reported.

“There was a lot of water damage” as well as smoke damage throughout the building, Christmas said, which led to the displacement of the residents. “Fire damage was contained to the one bedroom, but there was quite a bit of damage there.”

Cause of the blaze remains under investigation.

The chief said the American Red Cross responded to assist and set up temporary cots for the displaced residents at a neighboring church in the village.

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