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Witnesses Recount Massive Chase Avenue Fire

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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) — Many in the area of Chase Avenue awoke Wednesday morning to sight of firefighters working to get a handle on the massive fire.

Anna Smith, 18, who lived in the house where the fire started, told ABC40 that she was able to make it out safely, but is concerned over her pets.

“I lost many, many pets. We lost two pugs; we lost 13-14 cats; we lost ferrets; we lost a bearded dragon, bunny rabbits.”

“We believe it could have started in the basement, but the first thing we saw engulfed was the whole front porch,” said Smith, who is the mother of 15 month old daughter.

Ana told ABC40’s Tom Lewis that this isn’t the first time they’ve had a fire in their home: “We had an electrical fire in the past, the landlord had fixed the electrical box. He didn’t replace [the box on] the second floor. We had cardboard tubes. So we were all thinking maybe it had something to do with that. It could have been anything though, you don’t really know because our landlord took very good care of the home.”

Another neighbor recounted hearing explosions coming from cars along the street.

“Cars were exploding. They wouldn’t let me go back into home, I need to go back in my home, I need to check on my family and my animals as well,” said Denise Demarinis, who lives in the neighborhood.

At least 14 people have been displaced from the fire.

ABC40 will continue to follow this story and have more on it, on-air and online, as it becomes available.

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