Major fire ravages Montreal condos

As many as 70 people were forced to flee their homes in Montreal's Rosemont district after a major fire broke out in a nearby condominium project.

Arson squad called in to investigate

The fire jumped through three residential buildings. ((CBC))

Police are investigating a suspicious fire that forced more than 70 people from their homes in Montreal's Rosemont district early Tuesday morning.

The fire broke out in a condominium project under construction on Dandurand Street, between 9th and 10th Avenues.

The flames spread rapidly and the fire jumped "from building to building" said police Const. Simon Delorme.

Montreal's fire department was notified at 3:30 a.m. and more than 200 firefighters were dispatched.

The fire burned for more than three hours before firefighters managed to gain control.

The Red-Cross sent a bus to shelter evacuees, who were in shock, but not injured, according to reports from the scene.

The fire torched a parked car. ((CBC))
Sophie Boileau says she woke up at 3:30 a.m. with a start.

"A couple of seconds [later] a neighbour knocked at my door, saying 'there's a fire, you have to get out," she said. "I just had time to put my coat on, get my cat in a cage, and get out of my apartment."

Police shut down several nearby streets, and local traffic is being rerouted.

Construction sites that go up in flames often result in very aggressive fires, said Denis Doucet, an operations chief with the fire department.

In this case, there were propane tanks at the work site, which could have contributed to the fire, he said.