ALGONQUIN – A man in a Bulls coat stood on Main Street, hair singed, and watched fire crews carry the contents of his residence out onto a snowy sidewalk.
Firefighters responded to and put out a fire at 102 S. Main St., Algonquin, at about 7 p.m. Friday. A fire had started in a room on the building’s ground floor, an address that looks like a storefront – with large, glass windows – but was being used as an apartment.
The man who lives there was transported to a hospital with minor burns on his neck and the singes atop his head, said Joe Teson, shift commander of the Algonquin-Lake in the Hills Fire Department. Fire officials carried a caged rabbit from the scene, which they said had suffered minor injuries but was still alive. They said a turtle had also been found in the apartment.
Teson said the man’s apartment would likely be deemed uninhabitable, but expected the building’s other residents would be able to re-enter their apartments by night’s end, pending clearance from the building inspector.
Fire investigators were working at the scene Friday night, but a cause was yet to be determined.
Lisa Blum, who lives in the building, said the smoke alarms had been going off for 15 or 20 minutes Friday evening when her boyfriend decided to go investigate. He walked around the building, smelled smoke, peered in a window and saw the glow of flames, Blum said.
Chris Leahy, of Lake in the Hills, said he was at a friend’s house nearby when they heard the alarms. They went outside and saw “a lot of smoke.” Firefighters arrived shortly thereafter, Leahy said.
Emergency crews blocked off Main Street from Algonquin Road to Washington Street during the fire and cleanup.