Worker on smoke break sparks fire that destroys waterfront law office
Post updated at 12:30 p.m.
A stubborn wharf fire that erupted around 5 a.m. sent five firefighters to the hospital and did an estimated $3 million in damage to the two-story Sarrouf Law building at 95 Commercial Wharf, the Boston Fire Department reports.
Property owners will need to make some decisions on the future of this building. ... The cause was the careless disposal of a cigarette. Specifically, an employee worked late into the night. They would go to the 2nd floor balcony for cigarette breaks. Fire Investigators based this on ruling out other causes, burn patterns, interviews and other factors.
Divers were ordered into the water with a hose to help fight the fire from below. Above, firefighters cut trenches in the building's floor to get at the fire, which spread under the floorboards. Firefighters were still battling pockets of fire at 7:30 a.m.
Three firefighters suffered smoke inhalation, one a rib injury and another a neck injury, the department says, adding that at the height of the fire, 75 firefighters were on scene.
The smoke was so thick it set off at least one smoke detector in Charlestown.