Three-alarm fire in East Boston displaces 23 people, causes $250,000 in damage

A three-alarm fire that ripped through the top floor of a three-story home in East Boston Sunday evening has displaced 23 people and caused about $250,000 in damage, according to Boston Fire Department officials.

Steve MacDonald, a fire department spokesman, said a cause is not yet known for the fire that started on the top floor of a residence on Havre Street around 5:15 p.m., and that firefighters arrived to heavy flames. A third alarm was called because of the residence’s proximity to other houses.

No one was injured in the fire, but 5 Havre St. – which connects to 7 Havre St., where the fire occurred – was damaged by smoke and water, MacDonald said.

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Firefighters were still on scene as of 7:30 p.m. working to determine the fire’s cause. Two firefighters were treated on the scene for debris in their eyes, but continued to work, MacDonald said.

Roxanne Cinelli, 29, has lived for two years in the apartment where the fire began with her sister and cousin, and was inside when the fire started, she said.

“I just wanted everyone to get out,’’ Cinelli said through tears, repeating herself as she was consoled by a friend.

Cinelli’s cousin, Lee Alston, 38, said he was also present when the fire started.

“I was coming back from the store and walking up the stairs, when I heard a pop and saw the fire,’’ Alston said.

Kathy Dalessandro, 47, the mother of another resident of 7 Havre St., said she did not think the residents would be able to recover any of their possessions.

“Everything is gone,’’ Dalessandro said. “They have no clothes, no shoes, no money. Everything was in the house.’’

Kat Powers, a spokeswoman for the Red Cross of Eastern Massachusetts, said the organization is putting together a team to assist people displaced by the fire.

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