At approximately 11 p.m. on Dec. 6, the Somerville Fire Department Communications Center started receiving calls for a house fire with people trapped.
Because of activity at the time of this alarm, there was a delay in the response.
The Somerville Police Department was the first to arrive at the scene and reported a house "fully involved with people trapped." Officer Derrick Dottin entered through the rear of the house, without any protective firefighting gear, and rescued a 69 year -old woman who was unconscious. He carried her to the street to be transported to a local hospital.
Officer Dottin was also transported to a local hospital to be treated for smoke inhalation.
As the first firefighting companies started to arrive on the scene, the fire had taken great headway. The second due Engine Company, under the direction of Lieutenant Mark Wall, immediately transmitted a second alarm.
Firefighter Sylvester Moore of Ladder 3 also entered the rear of the house where he rescued a 50 year-old man. He was carried out to the street by firefighter Joseph Barry of Tower 1.
The elderly woman's other son and daughter-in-law were with her in the street. They also resided in the house with their 8 year-old daughter but escaped unharmed. As of this time, both mother and son are in Massachusetts General Hospital in critical but stable condition.
At the time of the fire, the temperature was 20 degrees. The house, which was 200 years old, was a total loss and is in the process of being torn down.
The Somerville Fire Department was assisted with mutual aid at this fire from Boston, Cambridge, Everett, and Medford Fire Departments. The closet engine company to this fire was also out of service due to budget restraints.