2-Alarm Fire Injures 3, Displaces Residents

Saturday, November 9, 2013 - 11:05pm

Three people, two of them firefighters, were transported to UW Hospital overnight following a 2-alarm fire at 2302 University Avenue just before midnight. On arrival, firefighters saw smoke billowing from the eastern-most section of a 3-story apartment building, and immediately called for a second alarm. Dozens of people were evacuating. There were reports of at least one person trapped inside.

As crews assessed the scene, they observed two people on the third floor who were unable to escape through the smoke and fire on the first and second floors. Ladder 1 put up a portable ladder through the smoke and rescued the two from a third-floor window, as Engine 9 kept a stream of water on the fire below.

An occupant on the first floor was just making his way to the front door, and was met by firefighters who assisted him in getting to an ambulance. He was transported to UW Hospital.

Two firefighters were injured during firefighting operations and also transported to UW where they were treated and released.
With the number of occupants exhibiting some signs of smoke inhalation, paramedics set up a medical triage to assess possible injuries, but no other occupants required transport.

The fire was knocked down at 12:05 a.m. Extensive overhaul was required as firefighters checked void spaces in the hallway.
The apartment has three segments separated by a hallway.

Residents from two of the building sections were allowed back into their apartments. The property managers established a fire watch overnight until the building's alarm system can be reset. Residents of the third section, where the fire is believed to have started, were allowed to retrieve some of their belongings, but will not be able to live in that section for the foreseeable future.

The response for the 1st and 2nd alarms included 48 firefighters and paramedics. Many of the occupants of the building are UW students. The fire department was assisted by Madison Police and UW Police. Vice Provost for Student Life and Dean of Students Lori Berquam reported to the scene to assist students.
Occupants also received assistance from the American Red Cross - Badger Chapter.

Fire investigators are currently working the scene to determine the cause of the fire. Damage estimates are still being calculated.

  • Lori Wirth, (608) 5754943