Two people are in the hospital and others had to be evacuated after a fire in one of the oldest high-rises in Maryland.
The fire started after someone plugged three power strips into each other and then plugged them into a lightweight extension cord, causing $30,000 in damage, according to Montgomery County Fire and Rescue spokesman Pete Piringer.
The fire at the Washingtonian in the Rio area of Gaithersburg, Maryland, started in a master bedroom of one of the apartments around 1:30 a.m. Wednesday.
Update – 9701 Fields Rd, Washingtonian Towers, 27-sty residential apt bldg; 2 residents w/ smoke inhalation, NLT; several others displaced; Damage, $30K; Cause, electrical power strip (failure) 3 power strips plugged into each other & plugged into a light weight extension cord pic.twitter.com/n44cyCiZwq
— Pete Piringer (@mcfrsPIO) June 3, 2020
The bedroom where the fire started had what firefighters described as “hoarding conditions.”
A man “assisted his mother to safety and then unsuccessfully attempted to extinguish the fire himself,” Piringer said.
The two people who were transported to the hospital lived in the apartment where the fire began. They were transported to a burn unit in D.C., Piringer said.
Piringer said 75 to 80 firefighters responded to the fire on the 6th floor of the 27-story apartment building.
He said that a number of people in the building who had mobility issues had to be helped out.
Several residents have been displaced.
The location of the fire can be seen below:
WTOP’s Colleen Kelleher and Valerie Bonk contributed to this story.