Woman, 61, in critical condition after apartment fire in Saint-Henri

A 61-year-old woman is in critical condition after a fire broke out in a residential building in Montreal's Saint-Henri neighbourhood on Tuesday night.

The fire started at around 10 p.m. on the first floor of a four-unit building on Beaudoin Street, near Ste-Émilie Street.

About 50 firefighters were called to the scene and were able to get the fire under control, but the building was heavily damaged.

The 61-year-old woman was in cardiac arrest when firefighters arrived, and two other people had to be treated for smoke inhalation.

The cause of the fire has not been confirmed.

Alain Béland/Radio-Canada

Neighbour Diane Gervais was among the first on the scene. She told CBC that she recognized the victim, identifying her as Doris Bafaro.

Gervais said Bafaro was well-known in the neighbourhood and could often be seen panhandling.

"Doris — we see her all the time. She is usually in front of the SAQ with her dog," said Gervais.

Several tenants were forced from the building Tuesday night. There were also two dogs forced out by the fire: Magnum and Bella.

Another neighbour, Jo-Anne Lavoie, said the community has come together to find temporary foster homes for the dogs.