Schaumburg police and firefighter/paramedics responded about 4:35 PM Tuesday to an automatic fire alarm at Friendship Village, 350 West Schaumburg Road. The automatic fire alarm was upgraded due to report of smoke seen and smelled in a third floor attic space at the Bridgegate building apartments in the C building. No smoke was showing outside upon arrival of first engine. When firefighters climbed in the third floor attic, light smoke was discovered in the attic; but no fire was seen.
A small fire was discovered and extinguished with a hand pump while a fire engine crew brought in a fire house in case it was needed. Firefighters cleared up insulation above an apartment that was undergoing some type of renovation or air conditioning work to fully extinguish the fire. Apparently soldering ignited building materials.
Initially building evacuation was underway, but evacuation was stopped due to the small extent of the fire, which was reported extinguished at 5:03 pm. Firefighters checked the attic for extension and entered the apartment below the affected attic.
Firefighters were on the scene for an extended time period for cleanup and overhaul.
No injuries were reported.
Firefighters were working with particular concern because attic fires can spread since they can be difficult to find and difficult to access. The extra time before water is put on the fire can give the fire more time to spread. Additionally, winds were gusty at the time. Drafts in the attic could have fanned the fire and helped the spread of the fire. Last, but not least, the life safety issues of the building were also a factor because firefighters could have been faced with a difficult evacuation of residents — with some not able to move rapidly on their own.
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