NORTH ADAMS, Mass. — Curran Highway was shut down for hours Thursday night as firefighters battled a massive blaze at Cariddi Auto Sales.
Flames could be seen shooting through the roof as city firefighters fought freezing temperatures to extinguish the fire.
The nearby hydrants were frozen and tanker trucks from Adams, Clarksburg and Florida shuttled in water. The regulators were freezing and had to be thawed by a propane heater. The hoses needed constant water being pushed through to avoid freezing.
Adams also provided it's air-pack truck and Clarksburg covered the North Adams station.
"It was a real tough one to fight," said Fire Director Stephen Meranti. "The regulators were freezing, the lines were freezing, the men were freezing."
One firefighter was taken to North Adams Regional Hospital with smoke inhalation and another was taken for a shoulder injury.
Meranti said it is too early to tell what caused the fire but it began in the roof at the center of the building. The dealership used to be a carwash and had multiple layers of roofing that hindered the firefighter's efforts, Meranti said.
The south side of the building remains mostly intact but the north side is a total loss, Meranti said.
"There were some flammable substances in the building that we were concerned about," Meranti said.
Firefighters cut through the roof to get at the fire and heavy smoke continued to billow out until 11 p.m. The building will be monitored through the night for hot spots.
Mayor Richard Alcombright said firefighters responded to the fire at shortly after 7 p.m. National Grid arrived on the scene at about 8 p.m. to turn off the power.
State Street was closed off at the intersection with Main Street. Police were allowing limited access to the area. Traffic was also being detoured at Hodges Cross Road. Firefighters left the scene just after 11 p.m. and the road was reopened.
The fire gave the North Adams Ambulance Service its first chance to deploy its new rehab trailer. A tent with a propane heater for emergency personnel to treat firefighters and provide a central meeting spot, warmth and refreshments, was attached to the medical trailer.
"This is the first deployment of the rehab trailer. It's been in the works for a couple of months," North Adams Ambulance Safety Officer Amalio Jusino said. "We had the trailer for some time and we just decided to get creative and see if we can be more helpful to the fire department."
Jusino and Lt. Lynn Richardson manned the trailer all evening, taking vital signs and examining firefighters.
"Being proactive is better than being reactive," Jusino said.
The rehab trailer is designed for both winter and summer conditions and complies with the National Fire Protection Agency standards. The service is looking to purchasing a misting fan for the summer.
Cariddi Sales is a small dealership of used autos across from the intersection of the highway and Old State Street, just north of Walmart at 676 Curran Highway. Its hours of operation on weekdays is until 5:30; it's not clear if anyone was on the site at the time of the fire.
The property has been owned by Guy R. Cariddi since at least 1984, when he and his father, the late Francis Cariddi, bought out Ralph Cariddi and Robert Bissaillon, who had been in partnership with Francis Cariddi, according to the Registry of Deeds.
The property has a two-bay service garage and office. The dealership also offers autobody work, towing and service. The cars in the yard have not been removed.
A fire at Cariddi Auto Sales destroyed the office and service garage on Thursday night. At least one firefighter was treated for smoke inhalation as emergency crews battled the blaze in freezing temperatures.
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Not to take a shot at the North Adams Fire Department, however, it's interesting that during every fire in N.A. one or more fireman are "injured" fighting the fire. On the contrary, every major fire in Clarksburg, Williamstown, Adams, Cheshire (or any other volunteer department in the Berkshires) there are never any injuries. Is this a full-time fire department scheme for an on-job injury disability or extra time off? If you disagree, search the archives of any local media source in the last 5 years and find the last time a NA fireman wasn't injured during an incident and when a volunteer was.
Give me a break. Of course they are going to have injuries. They are working with a limited number of guys. How about being thankful they are here to protect you, unless of course you too run into burning builidngs while everyone else is running out.
Maybe they are just more involved in there fight... don\'t knock what they do, unless you are in their shoes...do you seriously hear yourself saying that they actually want to get hurt... They have family\'s and would never do anything but their best for themselves and others...It isn\'t like throwing a game...Think again before you speak against others in this totally foolish way...and you say this is not a shot!!!
Its amazing how negative people can still be even though many people will be out of work and have lost something they''ve worked hard for due to this fire why can't the put aside the negativity, or already keep it to themselves, and for gods sake lets not put down the people who might save our lives someday heaven for bid anything happened
Great collaborative effort by all departments and individuals involved! The initial attack, reporting, Police with traffic, EMS with the Rehab Trailer and the Mutual-Aid assistance was greatly needed and appreciated.
Is that all you got out of this entire article was that they battled the blaze?? I mean, yeah, they battled the blaze, of course they had to battle the blaze!!!
You live in North Adams Brittany?? Let's hope that if God forbid your house needs these first responders, they show up to BATTLE THE BLAZE at your house....
I am just shocked you'd even think to post such a thing about guys who are running in and risking their lives, RU doing that?... True or not true regarding the amount of injuries these firefighters risk their lives! I find this comment disrespectful, you should be ashamed..
What kinda dumb comment is that? Volunteers dont go inside?
Either your one of those old timers (pro) firefighters who sprays that real water, or just an A**hole with nothing else to say but what you hear from "one of those real firefighters".. Give me a break, were all there to do a job and risk our LIVES, wether your getting paid or not. Open your eyes man there all around you, there to help anyone that needs it, INCLUDING YOU!!!
ok i am honestly glad that none of the firefighters were seriously injuried they always do a good job!!! but to give prayers to the cariddi family is a JOKE! they have been in and out of court alot and ive been hearing from alot of ppl they set it on fire for insurance money...the place is a joke and are always selling lemon vehicles...my brother inlaw had gotten a vehicle from them and had to go to them LITERALLY 12 times for the SAME freakin problem!!! they are a JOKE!
These comments will continue to fly about the Job and about the company, no one is going to be able to stop someone from having an opinion, it's just nice to know that we have people, all around us, that will risk their lives to protect everyone else. These people should be praised and not criticized, and I think for the most part, the majority of people are extremely thankful for the job everyone does, so THANK YOU! As for iBerkshires.com, great job on the hard work to put all this together in such a timely fashion. I'm very proud to live in an area where people come together.
Actually, I thought “cc”s comment about pro v. volunteer was in response to “Injury?”s comment that No Adams Firefighters are ‘always’ injured and the surrounding towns’ volunteers ‘never’ are and practically accuses them of some sort of disability scam. As I read it: Yes, professionals are injured more often, and there is a real reason for it.
If I was offended by anything it’s the idea that praying for anyone is a joke, even if you don’t like them.
all firefighters are professionals. all train, whether volunteer or paid, to do the job. all risk their lives. all go into the buildings, and all do their best to protect lives and property. to say anything different IS disrespectful.
anyone who feels they do less should put a sign on their front lawn saing "if this property catches fire please don't bother to come. you are not respected here".
oh, and while north adams is at a fire, if another fire breaks out there will be volunteers there to show up for you. will you turn them away?
and do you realize how many of the "professional" north adams firefighters started out and trained at/with area volunteer fire departments/companies? quite a few are from clarksburg, which is the first volunteer company to be called for support when they need it.
ALL FIREFIGHTERS ARE PROFESSIONALS so please don't disrespect the men and women who do the training, spend the time, leave jobs they get paid for to loose income doing what they volunteer to do for their community!
It is unknown if the post by “Injury?” is slanted in such a way to suggest NAFD members are looking for a disability, however, a brief (not a five year study) of North Berkshire fires does atleast on the surface begin to support the claim by “Injury?” that NAFD members always suffer injuries. I can’t find a surrounding department reporting the same during their fires.
I certainly would hope that NAFD members would not exaggerate injuries while performing the job they choose to have, however, the support they are receiving in these posts are incredibly weak. Since someone chose to be a fireman does not automatically eliminates a taxpayer’s right to question the department because they extinguish a fire once in awhile. Do we not have a right to question a construction company who builds a bridge from taxpayer funds because the work they are performing is 1. Dangerous and 2. They are keeping thousands of people safe everyday from building a trustworthy bridge that won’t collapse?
Firefighters perform a dangerous job at times and certainly are an asset to society. However, nurses, police officers, construction workers, mail carriers, air line pilots, etc. also carry out just as important functions on a daily basis. No one, including firefighters, should ever be immune to constructive criticism especially from the people who contribute to their salaries. These are the “checks and balances” which allows us to live in a transparent and democratic society while greatly reducing the chances of corruption and dictatorship. When starting down this path of censorship you will find there is no end.
This story is about a business burning. Unrelated attacks about the business and fireman should be directed to the tasteless and rude topix blog. Disapointed iberkshires is allowing people to kick those who are down. Good job for quickly posting the story, but poor judgement for allowing some of these posts.
ALL firefighters are well trained and do the job the best that they can. They ALL put their lives on the line no matter what their job at each and every fire. Volunteers DO attack from inside fire scenes. And as I have said before and will say again The flames do not know, nor do the flames care, whether the firefighter fighting the fire is a paid person or a volunteer. The smoke will kill either type of firefighter in an equal amont of time. EVERY firefighter should be respected for their service, whether he or she drives the truck, holds the hose, provides traffic control, or gears up for an inside attack. To all my friends who are volunteers in all the local departments and the paid people at the paid departments: Thank you, thank you, thank you
Kudos to the North Adams Firemen. Also, to their wives who waited at home with little ones and babies praying to God that their husbands would come home alive. Shame on the cowards who can't even post their names to their ignorant sentence fragments they barely sputter out from the safety of their homes. Good thing there are men with enough machismo to protect us like the NAFD. Maybe the guys who blog on here could grow their own set? One other thing, iberkshires skates pretty close to slander and libel by allowing annonymous bloggers on here, in any event. Check out the caselaw. You could get sued. Good luck with that, and thank you, NAFD.
I have had to delete two comments for inappropriate language. If it continues I will shut off the comments. This thread is about the fire - not about the merits of volunteer companies vs. professionals nor about allegations of faking injuries nor about used-car customer service.
That's not true! Volunteers go into fires. I am married to a volunteer fire fighter and he has gone into many burning buildings. They also have fought many forest and brush fires.I also am friends with many volunteers who have done all that I have mentioned. So unless you know what you are talking about, keep your mouth shut!
The worst part about it is this "cc" person is probably a North Adams firefighter saying what he said, only because that remark has came from a North Adams firefighter before...And several others as well from this Dept. Without knowing the real problem that stems between the two (paid vs vol) we will never understand why it is, the way it is. Most people would think nothing of it, then their others that can`t stand the fact that we do what it is we do. "why would you get out of bed at 3am in the morning to run inside a burning house to help someone you dont even know"? Why would some people get up and go fishing at 5am? BECAUSE ITS WHAT THEY AND WE ENJOY DOING!!!
Maybe it will never happen, but one day you might find yourself being pulled out by one of us Vol. firefighters or saving the home you, your wife and kids live in.. MAYBE. Does the rescue become any different because we`re not on a clock when the tones go off? Think about it.
First off this is a awful event and my heart goes out to the Cariddi's. Very confused however about the lemons comment and the one about the Pitchers Mound being on fire??? Why are we wasting our time posting such things??? I have my feelings about Cariddi's Auto but you never wish bad events on anyone. People are who they are....end of story. Sue Bush and others hit it on the money....firefighters are not only respected but are the heroes of many young children. Swearing on these posts should not be allowed but stupid unrelated comments should not be either. Show some compassion all around people!!!