More than 40 residents were evacuated Dec. 26 from the group home on West Main Street after a second-floor sofa fire caused smoke damage and activated sprinkler systems in the building. Photo: Denise Civiletti

A sofa fire in a second-floor room at a group home on West Main Street last night activated sprinkler systems and caused the evacuation of more than 40 residents.

Riverhead Town Police officers and staff at the Concern for Independent Living Home at 260 West Main Street evacuated residents in heavy smoke conditions and flooding on the first and second floors of the brick building.

Officers located the source of the smoke on the second floor in a resident’s room, police said. Riverhead Fire Department responded and fully extinguished a small sofa chair within the room, according to police.

All residents were accounted for on scene including the resident who occupied the room where the fire source was located, police said.

No injuries were reported to police at the scene.

Riverhead Volunteer Ambulance responded and assisted on scene with well checks of the resident’s outside.

The Riverhead Police Department received a 911 call at 6:16 p.m. reporting a possible fire at 260 West Main Street, the former Henry Perkins Hotel.

Riverhead Fire Marshals, Riverhead Detective Division and the Suffolk County Police Department Arson Unit responded and investigated the scene. The investigation is still ongoing, but police said cigarette smoking inside the second floor room has been identified as a possible cause of the fire.

The building sustained heavy water and smoke damage and was deemed presently unlivable, police said. The Red Cross responded and assisted Concern for Independent Living staff with relocating the residents.

Riverhead Police request any person with information about this incident call the detective division at 631-727-4500.

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Denise Civiletti
Denise is a veteran local reporter, editor, attorney and former Riverhead Town councilwoman. Her work has been recognized with numerous awards, including investigative reporting and writer of the year awards from the N.Y. Press Association. She is a founder, owner and co-publisher of this website.Email Denise.