SCHENECTADY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Over a dozen people are without homes after a fire tore through a Schenectady apartment building early Sunday morning. The building was demolished Monday.
“They gave us vouchers for the hotel, so we went to the hotel,” said Walter Maybanks, who used to live at 223 Nott Terrace. “I just thank God that nobody got hurt, you know what I’m saying? Lives aren’t replaceable, but material things can be replaced.”
Only one person sustained minor injuries in the fire, and authorities say that person was treated on the scene. No firefighters were hurt battling the flames.
The American Red Cross is assisting people like Maybanks, who lived at the now demolished building, along with some residents next door who were evacuated because their building sustained minor smoke and water damage. Those residents, however, will eventually be able to move back in.
Schenectady Fire Chief Don Mareno commended the Red Cross for their assistance, as well as his crews for keeping the fire contained to one building.
This wasn’t the first time disaster struck 223 Nott Terrace. In 2018, a mudslide trapped residents inside. There were injuries, but everyone made it out alive. According to Chief Mareno, this event would not have impacted the building’s integrity today.
“After something like that happens, the city has a plan in place,” Mareno told NEWS10, “so codes division was here, making sure that all the necessary repairs were made and they wouldn’t allow anyone to occupy the building unless everything was repaired to the standards that they need to be.”
Sunday morning’s fire, however, was enough to take down the building for good. The remnants of what once was a single-room-occupancy building now sit under a tarp after crews made quick work of the demolition Monday, only taking a few hours to tear it down.
Chief Mareno said the cause of the fire is under investigation.