Senior housing blaze in Skokie determined accidental
Updated: October 21, 2012 1:59PM
SKOKIE — Skokie firefighters are calling a fire that broke out Sept. 2 on the seventh floor of a senior living facility at 5140 Galitz St. accidental.
A fire report released last week provides more details about the blaze, which injured two people.
Fire officials called the fire “small” and “concentrated.” It activated the building’s sprinkler system, which controlled the fire until fire personnel arrived on the scene, they said.
That happened at 1:17 a.m. when personnel found an elderly woman on the top floor unconscious due to smoke inhalation, according to the report. She was carried down the stairwell to waiting paramedics and taken to a local hospital in serious condition, fire officials said.
A fire spokesman last week said the woman was still hospitalized.
Many residents of the building either evacuated by themselves or were evacuated by first responders, but not everyone needed to leave, fire officials said. The building sustained water damage but remained open. All but eight units were habitable, allowing most residents to return to their homes that day. The report lists the fire as under control by 1:56 a.m., nearly 40 minutes after the first unit arrived on the scene.
Structural damage from the fire is estimated at $60,000 and damage to contents at $40,000.
“Extinguishment was accomplished, but salvage and clean up from the sprinkler systems required a significant effort over the course of several hours,” the report stated.
At the scene Sept. 2 were 50 personnel in six engines, three trucks, three squads, two ambulances, two command vehicles and three other vehicles. Skokie Fire received help from departments in Evanston, Glenview, Lincolnwood, Morton Grove, Niles and Winnetka.