GOOSE CREEK, SC, DEC. 14, 2011 – Two adults, an elderly bedridden woman and her adult son, were at home when smoke detectors sounded. The son went next door to call 911. When City of Goose Creek Fire Department units were dispatched, smoke was visible a mile away. Engine 1 and 2, the rescue and a medic unit were dispatched and two additional engines were requested. Another unit was relocated to an empty nearby fire station. The first engine laid in a supply line. A 1¾-inch handline was stretched to the front entrance, where fire from the well-involved, two-car garage was extending across a porch to the main entrance. A 2½-inch handline was positioned to hit the heavy fire conditions in the garage. A single car was on fire.

The fire was extending to the front of the house and the attic. Firefighters started to knock down the fire when Assistant Chief Norman Cutshall saw the garage door collapse. He then saw a crack had formed in the wall over the garage door. He yelled for the firefighters to move back and told the other nozzle team to stay away from the garage. Within 15 seconds after the hose crew was moved, the wall over the garage door collapsed.

The house was new and built of lightweight construction. When the roof burned through after the heavy fire had extended to the attic, the wall and brick facade collapsed. The fire was caused by carelessly discarded smoking materials in a trash can in the garage. There were no injuries. Caromi Fire & Rescue and the Goose Creek Rural Fire Department also responded.

Harvey Eisner