Firefighters trace downtown apartment fire to dehumidifier

Woman rescued from her window

Madison firefighters are still investigating the cause of a Monday morning apartment building fire.

It started in the area of a dehumidifier in the basement of the building at 11 W. Gilman St., according to the Madison Fire Department.

The apartment tenants had working smoke detectors and exited the building safely.

Heavy smoke blocked one woman’s exit. After she reported the fire to 911, firefighters rescued her through a window.

 “It doesn’t happen that often, but we train for it often, so we’re ready to go, and it went very, very smooth. It went like it should,” said firefighter Todd Shortreeed, who rescued the woman from the building.

“Responding to a fire in and of itself is pretty exciting, and when you know a victim’s involved, it increases it quite a bit,” said Ryan Stebnitz, who assisted with the rescue.

The fire caused approximately $50,000 in damage. 

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