Claridge Residents Can’t Yet Return Home

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Residents of about 165 apartments on the west side of the Claridge II condominium will have to stay out of their dwellings for another night.

According to a statement issued by the Verona Police Department, the Verona Office of Emergency Management met this afternoon with condo association board members, staff, and contractors, as well as senior representatives from Verona police, fire, EMS, construction code enforcement, and fire prevention, but they did not authorize a return. The residents of the condo were ordered to evacuate on Monday night due to fire, smoke and water damage from a fire whose cause has yet to be determined.

Verona officials have given few details about the location and extent of the fire, but it appears to have done little harm to people. Only one person had to be hospitalized, although 39 first responders were evaluated at the scene for health issues.

Verona’s first responders remained at the building until 11:30 p.m. Monday night, after having received assistance from police, fire and EMS units from a dozen or more neighboring towns all afternoon. A VPD patrol remained in place overnight to secure the west side of the building. Claridge maintenance staff also worked with the building’s electrical contractor and recovery company to conduct a damage assessment and begin remediation of identified issues, the VPD said.

Power is still off on the west side of the 12-story condo tower. While the east side does have power, the air conditioning and elevators are out for the entire building. The VPD, Verona Rescue Squad, and Verona Fire Department have been assisting individuals with mobility issues out of the building as requested for urgent needs.

The VPD said Verona’s Office of Emergency Management “will provide specific timelines for reoccupation of the west side upon final recommendation by the electrical contractor and construction official.”

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3 COMMENTS

  1. Thank you for keeping the Verona community informed about the fire at Claridge II. In yesterday’s article however there is some incorrect information attributed to the Fire Department report. The electrical service in our apartments is operational, and has not been shut down either on the East or the West side of the building. We additionally have one working elevator on the West side although we are currently prohibited from moving back in.
    Although incredible progress has been made, we are currently without elevator service on the East side of the building as well as air-conditioning for the entire building. Restoration goes on non-stop.
    We are indebted to the first responders who have done incredible work from the first alarm and throughout the July 4th holiday. We would not be where we are without them.
    John Rollo, Treasurer, Claridge II

  2. I’m curious about why the East side elevators have not yet been repaired. It is July 9th and many residents still can’t get to their apartments. They may be able to walk up, but elderly residents are displaced without any communication or updates.

  3. I’m very disappointed to see how the Claridge House 2 Team is not communicating with the residents, Most of the residents are elderly people who have no where to go. My mother is now staying in a hotel close by and every day she gets the same answer: “call again tomorrow. “ When she calls Claridge house 2 office , every day the lines are busy non stop and she spends the entire day redialing the number until she finally can get through; only with someone saying call again tomorrow . Today is July 12th ; The fire was on July 3rd and it’s now been over a week ….. my mother’s home is on the 11th floor on the East wing; . Where there has been no damage of the fire and still no answers. Who can I contact to push for an answer on how much longer and what is happening ? We would like to know when my mother can return to her home.? I hope a journalist or some one can follow up on this and find a solution for the homeowners to return to their homes as soon as possible. I’m her daughter who lives on the other side of the world . It’s very frustrating for everyone . How come my mother never received an email telling her what has happened. She flew all the way from Argentina had the driver who collected her from the airport stop by kings supermarket filled the car with groceries and then the door man said : sorry there was a fire 3 days ago your not allowed in. Who is responsible for not informing the tenants. ?????

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