Alarm System Broke 2 Days Before Fatal Massachusetts Apartment Fire

January 23, 2017

The Massachusetts Fire Marshal says the communications connection between the fire alarm system and the alarm monitoring company had broken two days before a New Year’s Day fire in a Holyoke apartment building that killed three.

Peter Ostroskey said the reason for the communications loss is unknown. The monitoring company called property management several times to alert them to the lost connection.

Authorities have said there was a “substantial delay” with the fire department’s response because of the alarm malfunction.

The building’s owner has received a non-criminal citation for failure to have the alarm system tested.

The alarm within the building sounded, alerting residents, but the first the fire department heard of the blaze was from 911 calls.

The Jan. 1 fire was blamed on an electrical outlet malfunction.

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