5-alarm blaze strikes Dorchester triple-decker

8-16-2012 Dorchester, Mass. Boston Firefighters at the scene of a 4 alarm fire at 5 Fairmont Street, Dorchester, the 3 family house was completely destroyed after the fire started in the basement. Globe photo by Bill Brett
Firefighters atop ladders rained water down on the burning Dorchester house.Bill Brett for The Boston Globe

A five-alarm fire tore through a Dorchester triple-decker today, causing $300,000 in damage, but no life-threatening injuries were reported, authorities said.

8-16-2012 Dorchester, Mass. Boston Firefighter from Ladder 6 waiting for water at the scene of a 4 alarm fire at 5 Fairmont Street, Dorchester, the 3 family house was completely destroyed after the fire started in the basement. Globe photo by Bill Brett
A firefighter waiting for water to fill his hose (Bill Brett for The Boston Globe)The Boston Globe

Two residents were treated for anxiety after the fire on Fairmount Street, while four firefighters were taken to the hospital for evaluation, said fire department spokesman Steve MacDonald.

The fire, which took more than 3 hours to knock down, was reported at 11:12 a.m. at 5 Fairmount St.

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Arriving firefighters found heavy smoke coming from the basement and the fire extending upwards.

The fire spread into the walls and quickly reached the roof. As flames spread into all the floors, firefighters were ordered to evacuate the building and the focus shifted to containment, MacDonald said.

Firefighters directed jets of water on the blaze from aerial ladders, from water cannons mounted on engines, and from the porch of a building next door.

“I pulled up and heard an alarm going off, but I didn’t think anything of it,” said James Armand, 28, who lives on the first floor of the burnt house. “I walked in the house and the smoke was coming up the floor vent, so I figured it was coming from the basement. So I opened the back door, and this big black smoke was pouring from the basement.”

Smoke from the fire drifted through neighborhood streets for blocks around, and large crowds gathered to watch firefighters battle the blaze.

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