A firefighter was hospitalized after crews rescued an 82-year-old man from a burning apartment building on Tuesday afternoon.
Brockton Fire said the man was removed from a third floor porch of a building at 685 Oak St. using a ground ladder around 4 p.m.
"The fire was blowing out on the second floor porch and some of the bystanders said there was somebody up there," recalled Brockton firefighter Ben Denny.
Video from the scene showed firefighters attending to the man on the ground. The man, who was identified by family as Paul Mulloy, appeared to be conscious and alert.
"It was just an incredible rescue," Mayor Bill Carpenter said. "They got up there really quickly and got him out. There's no doubt in my mind that they saved his life."
According to Brockton Fire Deputy Chief Charles Davis, a passerby noticed the fire and reported it.
According to Mulloy's daughter-in-law, Mulloy has burns on 35 percent of his body and is still being treated.
Lieutenant Christopher O'Reilly and Firefighter Zachery Davis suffered second degree burns and were taken to a hospital for treatment.
Multiple other firefighters suffered lesser burn injuries and were treated at the scene.
Smoke and flames could be seen shooting from the building. The extent of the damage is not yet known, but the fire marshal's office is responding.
"My husband was out of the car and screaming and opened the doors because he saw the flames coming out and my neighbor was on the deck," said Emilia Deoliveira, a resident of the Madrid Square Apartments. "The firefighters went up and got him really quick, and the fire was all the way outside already. It was really, really, really bad. I'm shaking still."
John O'Brien, who lives in an adjoining building, said he smelled and saw smoke and came outside to see what was going on. He said the building was "totally covered in flames" and was spreading rapidly.
"The next thing I knew, the guys on the truck went up there," he said. "While they were trying to get him out they were covered with flames. It was unbelievable. It was a scary thing to watch."
Most of the 12 units in the apartment complex suffered extensive damage. At least 30 people were displaced by the fire.
The fire has been ruled as accidental. Brockton fire says it started in the area of electrical appliances in the kitchen.