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Fire destroys home on Columbia Street

August 29, 2013

Update: The Rhode Island State Fire Marshal's office said Thursday that the fire was determined to be accidental, caused by the "improper disposal of smoking materials."

SOUTH KINGSTOWN – A fire destroyed the upper two floors of a home on Columbia Street Saturday afternoon.

According to Union Fire District Chief Robert Perry, crews were called to 25 Columbia St. at 3:37 p.m. Upon arrival, Perry said they found the second and third floor attic engulfed in flame with heavy black smoke emanating from the structure.

Perry said firefighters called in a second alarm, which brings in more stations. The Kingston Fire District and Narragansett Fire Department responded as well as eight of Union Fire District’s nine stations.
Perry said the home’s three residents exited the building safely and were outside of the home as crews arrived on scene.

According to South Kingstown Police reports, one of the home’s residents, Leroy A. Cook, 45, was arrested for disorderly conduct while crews were battling the blaze. He reportedly became belligerent during the fire, yelling profanity and interfering with fire personnel at the scene.
Firefighters remained on-scene until 6 p.m.

While no one was injured, Perry said several of the firefighters overheated and crews had to rotate going in and out of the building due to both the heat in the building and the warm outdoor temperature.
In addition to the fire damage sustained on the upper floors, the first floor of the building sustained water damage.

The Red Cross reportedly assisted the three victims in finding temporary housing.
South Kingstown EMS and South Kingstown Police also responded to assist. Perry said EMS helped the firefighters and the police helped with traffic and in monitoring the large number of spectators at the scene.

The Rhode Island State Fire Marshal is determining the cause of the blaze.

Southern Rhode Island Newspapers
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