A 9-year-old boy who suffered smoke inhalation in a fire last week remains unconscious and is breathing through a respirator, Pittsfield Fire Chief Robert Czerwinski said.

The boy, who is at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, is in "stable condition" in the pediatric intensive care unit, said Czerwinski, who has been in touch with the boy's father through an intermediary.

The boy, whose name is being withheld, has been diagnosed with carbon monoxide poisoning, he said. Tests were scheduled to be conducted today to look for further damage, Czerwinski said. "Everybody's optimistic," he said.

"Usually, when you have a young child, you'd like to think their systems can bounce back," Czerwinski said.

However, he is unsure what the prospects are for the young child. He described the boy's father as sounding "tired" after staying with his son since Thursday night.

Firefighters rescued the boy from a second-story window of the burning home Thursday night after a fire broke out in the family's kitchen. The boy's father, who had just returned from a trip to Africa, had fallen asleep while making dinner for his son and a family friend.

The father was alerted to the fire by yelling outside his home from neighbors. He jumped out the second-floor window of his home but was not injured. The boy was initially transported to Berkshire Medical Center before being transferred to Boston.

The family friend is believed to have been assisted by the American Red Cross, Czerwinski said.

Three of the home's four smoke alarms were not working at the time because they had no battery.

As for the home, it is "structurally sound," though the kitchen will "have to be gutted," the chief said. New sheetrock in the walls may be needed, along with new paint. There is smoke and heat damage throughout the home.

The boy's father, who owns the home, has fire insurance, Czerwinski said.

To reach Nathan Mayberg:
nmayberg@berkshireeagle.com
or (413) 496-6243