2 Firefighters Hurt, Dozens Displaced After Meriden Fire

Two Meriden firefighters were taken to the hospital with injuries suffered while battling a heavy fire at the Crown Village condo complex Saturday afternoon.

Fire crews responded to 525 Crown Street around noon. When they got there, they encountered heavy flames and smoke coming from building 11 of of the complex.

The fire was under control around 1 p.m. officials said.

According to the fire chief, one firefighter was transported to the hospital with heat exhaustion, another to be treated for burns. Both are expected to be OK.

No injuries to any residents of the building have been reported, but one person was reportedly trapped on a balcony, and had to jump out of a window to escape the blaze.

"I kind of tried to persuade him to jump, or like, he might die, you know. So, he ended up jumping out," said neighbor Brian Hines.

Firefighters also saved two cats from the fire. Several other cats are unaccounted for at this point.

The fire chief said that 22 units were affected by the fire and that about 50 to  60 people live in those units. The apartment complex has set up a shelter for those affected.

The American Red Cross is also assisting 12 people in three families displaced with emergency housing and other needs. Organization staff had met with 35 residents of 14 of the units as of Saturday and some families had left because they made their own arrangements for where to stay.

Six different departments consisting of around 70 firefighters responded to fight the fire. A police officer said the heat was so strong, some of the firefighters' helmets melted.

"I'm just glad that everybody got out with their lives," said resident Krystle Thomas. "Things could be replaced, but you know, your life is not replaceable."

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