Rockland fire officials and the State Fire Marshal’s Office are investigating the cause of a Rockland apartment fire that displaced seven people Monday night.

Rockland firefighters were called to 175 Rankin Road at 6:28 p.m. by a caller who reported an apartment on fire but that no one was inside when they left the building. Heavy smoke was visible from the second floor when crews arrived, according to Chief Chris Whytock.

Thirty-five firefighters used 750 gallons of water to extinguish the fire and stop it from spreading to other apartments, Whytock said. Two adjacent apartments had minimal smoke and water damage.

Seven people, including two tenants of the apartment where the fire started, were displaced. Most stayed with friends of family for the night.

No one was injured.

Whytock said the fire “could have been much worse” if it had started later in the evening when people were sleeping. He reminded people to check their smoke detectors and practice emergency escape routes.

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