EFFINGHAM — No one was injured in an apartment fire at 610 North Henrietta Street Saturday morning in Effingham.

Members of the Effingham Fire Department were dispatched to the scene at 11:09 a.m. followed by members of the Teutopolis Fire Protection District.

Effingham Assistant Fire Chief Matt Kulesza said the fire started in the kitchen of one of the first-floor apartments. When the crew arrived, he said they found the fire had spread into the next room.

“It started in the kitchen area between the microwave and the stove,” Kulesza said.

“They went ahead and did a can attack on it,” he said. “It subdued the fire enough until we could get our main hose line in.”

Kulesza said they were able to contain the fire as soon as they could get the hose line in and get water on it.

“The first, second and third floor was heavily contained with smoke,” Kulesza said. “We did a door-to-door search once we had enough members on the scene.”

Firefighters helped evacuate residents from their apartments. All residents were evacuated from the building.

Jeff Christianson was in an apartment on the first floor close to the fire when the fire alarm went off.

“I’ve lived here 21 years and it was always either popcorn, bacon or toast setting it off,” Christianson said. “This time the whole hallway was completely filled with smoke.”

Also responding were Watson and Shumway fire protection districts, Effingham City Police Department and Abbott EMS.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

Charles Mills can be reached at charles.mills@effinghamdailynews.com or by phone at 217-347-7151 ext. 126.


Charles Mills is reporter and videographer for the Effingham Daily News. A 1983 graduate of Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, he worked as senior video editor for a Nashville television station. He is a native of Vandalia.

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