A relief fund has been established for more than two dozen people who were displaced after an attempt to fry a turkey on Thanksgiving Day sparked a blaze that damaged three multi-family homes in New Bedford, Massachusetts.
New Bedford Mayor Jonathan Mitchell announced Saturday that the Washburn Fire Victims Fund has been established to help the 27 people whose Washburn Street homes were destroyed two days ago.
The blaze started Thursday morning as residents were trying to fry a turkey on their back deck, according to fire officials, and flames quickly spread to buildings on both sides.
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Fire crews from several communities spent hours battling the blaze, which caused extensive internal damage to the three structures.
While the 27 people living in the three homes were able to make it out safely, they were left without a place to stay, and the American Red Cross has been been assisting them.
One woman had to be taken to the hospital with serious injuries she sustained in the fire. There was no update on her condition Saturday.
New Bedford Acting Fire Chief Scott Kruger said the incident is a reminder that you can't underestimate the danger of cooking.
HOW TO DONATE
The fund was established at First Citizens’ Federal Credit Union by the City of New Bedford along with community partners including the Inter-Church Council of Greater New Bedford, Mitchell said.
The fund will begin with a $13,500 contribution from First Citizens' Charitable Foundation, according to Mitchell.
According to Mitchell's press release, 100% of the donations will be distributed to the families involved, with no administrative fees deducted.
If you'd like to donate, checks can be made out to the Washburn Fire Victims Fund and either dropped off or mailed to the Inter-Church Council, located at 128 Union Street Suite 100, New Bedford, MA 02740.
Donations can also be left for the fund at any First Citizens’ Federal Credit Union.
To donate online, click here to visit the Inter-Church Council’s page for this fund.