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Large Explosion Prompts Massive Response in Bridgeport

This article is a direct street report from our correspondent and has not been edited by the 1st Responder newsroom.

BRIDGEPORT, CT - On Friday, December 29, 2023 around 1:55 P.M., the Bridgeport Emergency Communications Center received multiple calls reporting a large explosion and fire in the area of Cross St. and Willow St., on the city's east side.

The Bridgeport Fire Department initially responded with four engines, two ladders, one rescue, one safety officer, and two battalion chiefs. Companies received additional info en route from police reporting several burn victims, who were quickly transported to the hospital.

Battalion 2, under the command of Assistant Chief William Hathaway, arrived on the scene and reported a large volume of fire coming from the area and requested a second-alarm of fire to be transmitted with multiple explosions continuing to occur. Companies found a large tank of an unknown oxidizer that had exploded, with fire spreading to several buildings on the property. A third-alarm of fire was soon transmitted, and with a special call for an additional engine and truck after, bringing the fire to a General Alarm. A full-team response was also requested from the Fairfield County Hazardous Incident Response Team.

Companies operated in a defensive posture for several hours, knocking down the fire until it was finally placed under control around 4:15 P.M. Several people were transported to the hospital with varying injuries. The Bridgeport Fire Marshal's Office is investigating the cause of this fire with the assistance of the Connecticut State Police Fire & Explosion Investigation Unit.

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