West Side boardinghouse fire leaves 12 adults homeless - The Buffalo News
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West Side boardinghouse fire leaves 12 adults homeless

A fire at a boardinghouse on Buffalo’s West Side early Thursday morning left 12 adults in need of assistance from the Red Cross, fire officials said.

The fire, reported at about 2:40 a.m., caused an estimated $300,000 in damages to the three-story, wood-frame house on the 300 block of Jersey Street.

The fire spread to a house next door, causing an estimated $150,000 in damages to that building, fire officials said,

No injuries were reported.

An investigation into the cause of the fire is continuing.

A man who identified himself as a victim of the fire said he and 10 other displaced residents were transported by American Cross volunteers to the Erie County Department of Social Services for further assistance, but that many or all of them were still waiting for help late Thursday morning.

Peter Anderson, a spokesman for Erie County Executive Mark C. Poloncarz, said the men, most of whom already receive some kind of social services benefits, were getting top priority for placement. By late afternoon, Anderson said five of them had received placement at Altamont House, a transitional residence on Syracuse Street.

“It’s a good example of DSS working hand in hand with the Red Cross to get some folks who were traumatized by the fire into a good placement tonight,” Anderson said.

Jay Bonafede, chief communications officer for the Western New York and Finger Lakes Region of the American Red Cross, said the displaced residents were transported to the Department of Social Services so as not to jeopardize any benefits they were already receiving.

“Our focus is on immediate needs, but we can make referrals to other agencies if they are in need of other services that we do not offer,” Bonafede said.

email: citydesk@buffnews.com

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