One person was killed and five others, including a fireman, were injured yesterday in a three-alarm blaze on the top floor of a five-story apartment house at 1324 Monroe St. NW, fire officials reported.
Many of the building's residents were evacuated by firemen who fought their way up interior stairways and helped some climbed down aerial ladders, officials said.
The identity of the person who was killed could not be learned immediately. The injured persons were under treatment last night at the Washington Hospital Center.
Four of the injured were listed as: George Fauntleroy, John Jones, June Chisley and Johnny Taylor. Fire inspector Freddie L. Brown said he believed all lived at the Monroe Street address.
The injured fireman was identified by fire officials as Michael Garrett of Truck Company 6.
The first alarm for the blaze was sounded at 4.30 p.m. according to a fire department dispatcher. The alarm brought firemen from the windows of the pale brick-and -stucco building at the corner of Monroe Street and Holmead Place NW. Residents were calling for help.
"We had people hanging out" the windows, said Deputy Fire Chief Harry E. Gates. He said firemen rang a second alarm at 4.33 p.m., three minutes after the first was received.
As residents of lower floors fled the building, firemen entered and "fought their way up" to evacuate others, Gates said. "They got up as soon as they could," said battalion chief Jack Kennedy.
Meanwhile, firemen sent in additional alarms. In a special alarm at 4.33 p.m., firemen called for a second rescue squad to help in evacuations, and for an aerial tower to bring more water to bear on the difficult-to-reach fifth floor.
After the third alarm, one minute later, there were almost 30 pieces of fire equipment on the tree-lined streets around the building. Platoons of soaked and sweating fire fighters made their way over a network of hose lines, and police put up barriers to keep dozens of spectators on sidewalks.
The fire was reported under control at 5.05 p.m. The cause of the blaze was still under investigation last night.
Officials said the fire appeared to be confined largely to two apartments on the fifth floor and to an attic or crawl space above them.
The body of the person killed in the fire reportedly was found in one of the two heavily damaged apartments, in a northeast wing of the building overlooking Monroe Street.
The apartments' windows had been broken out and shattered glass lay on the sidewalk below. The lintels, wall and cornice above the windows were blackened by smoke.
In the rear of the building, only one floor below, a potted plant rested on a window sill, undamaged and undisturbed.