Berkshire Eagle Staff

PITTSFIELD -- Two females escaped potential harm in the early morning hours on Saturday after their duplex on Francis Avenue caught fire that caused significant damage to the building’s backside.

Pittsfield firefighters put out the large fire at 269-271 Francis Ave. that started on the first floor, but spread and damaged the second floor and attic at about 1:15 a.m. on Saturday. The residents, Rene Gavin and Judy Jones, were both unharmed, according to the Pittsfield Fire Deputy Chief Michael Polidoro.

The cause of the fire is under investigation but no suspicious activity is suspected.

The house is owned by Charles Gian.

While putting out the fire, a fire lieutenant suffered a back injury and was taken to Berkshire Medical Center. He was released on Saturday. He suffered the image while tearing down a wall to get to the fire, Polidoro said, but the he was able to leave the house on his own. He’s expected to return to work next week.

Firefighters estimated $80,000 in structural damage and $40,000 to its contents.


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