Fire guts Law Offices at Commercial Wharf

-By Joshua Resnek

Strollers keep a nice pace while in the distance the photograph reveals the blackened exterior of 95 Commercial Wharf which burned last week. Workers are shown on the dock abutting the building that burned, which sits on pilings.

The law offices of Klieman and Lyons were greatly damaged by a fast moving fire last Wednesday that caused severe damage to a two story building sitting on pilings at 95 Commercial Wharf.

Boston firefighters responded to reports of heavy smoke and flames pouring from the rear of the structure shortly after 5:20 a.m. About 75 firefighters fought the blaze, including two firefighter/divers with a hoseline in the water, who worked underneath the building among the creosote soaked pilings.

The fire was brought under control about two hours later, according to Boston Fire officials.

Investigators said the fire was caused by a cigarette thrown carelessly during a late night break.

Estimates of damage ranged from $1.5 million to $3 million, showing the extraordinary value of waterfront property in the North End.

Four firefighters were injured during the blaze, which nearly gutted an entire area of the first and second floors of the property.

All the firefighters were taken to the Massachusetts General Hospital and later released.

Monday morning, workers were cleaning up the dock in front of the building, which has been secured.

A total rehabilitation of the heavily burned areas of the structure will be needed as well as structural tests relating to the integrity of the building for use again.