House fire with maydays in 18s local.
Wednesday, January 30, 2019
House Fire w/ Firefighter Maydays Declared
January 31, 2019 @0624 hours
On the above date and time the Christiana Fire Company was alerted as part of the fire box assignment to Goodwill Fire Company’s district, for a reported residential fire, specifically on Bunker Hill Road. Engine 12, Tower 12 and Deputy 12 responded on the assignment.
Police officers arrived just prior to fire apparatus and reported smoke showing from the front of the residence. Shortly thereafter, Engine 18 arrived, assumed the first due engine assignment and reported a two story residence with smoke showing, with their own hydrant for water supply in the front yard of the fire building. Second to arrive was Squad 23 and they assumed the second due engine assignment. Engine 18 passed the command to a responding chief officer, Deputy 18. Engine 22-3 was third arriving engine. Squad 23’s crew assisted Engine 18s crew with stretching the first hand line through the front door and to the basement, under high heat and zero visibility.
At this point, Engine 12 arrived, secured the second due water supply and stretched the second hand line through the front door to back up and protect the first crew and hand line operating beneath them. Tower 12 arrived directly behind Ladder 28 and Tower 12’s crew began the primary searches on the first floor while assisting companies to the basement stairs. Due to a cut up basement, the fire was difficult to locate and therefore began to burn through the first floor, which is believed to be the reason for the kitchen floor starting to sag, eventually collapsing. A second alarm was requested around this time frame, which brought Engine 6 to the scene. Engine 6 secured Engine 12’s forward lay.
After the collapse of the first floor, the companies operating beneath in the basement became disoriented and low on air. A mayday was declared for two firefighters in the basement. Engine 12 kept a hand line in service above the basement, as the first floor had extensive fire extension. Engine 12 was able to keep the fire from spreading to the basement stair case. Members of Tower 12’s crew were able to reach the basement stairs, go downstairs and locate the two firefighters in the basement, guiding them to the staircase, up the stairs and outside to awaiting EMS personnel. Once the firefighters were outside and it was confirmed they were the maydays, the maydays were officially cleared. All personnel were evacuated from the residence for an accountability check and to re-evaluate conditions. Rescue Engine 12 made the response once the maydays were declared as well.
Tower 12, Ladder 28 and Ladder 17 were utilized to make ventilation holes above the second floor on the roof and open walls that fire was traveling between. While on the roof, a second mayday was declared and cleared rather quickly. The firefighters injured either refused further treatment or were released from Christiana Hospital due to the team work and communication between the companies operating on the fire-ground, incident command and the NCC Communications Center.
Companies operated for a number of hours in freezing temperatures to eventually bring the fire under control. Our thoughts are with the family and those involved with the maydays.
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