2 Alarm Warehouse Fire in Polk County (FL)
Polk firefighters tacked a two alarm warehouse fire on Monday, Feb. 11th. The company was in a portion of renovated home improvement warehouse separated from a much larger warehouse by a firewall with four rated roll up doors. It had been a busy day throughout the county and E-15 (first due) had just recently completed a special operations extrication when a garbage truck overturned onto another vehicle. It was a great save, but that's another story. About 5:28 PM the tones went off for a commercial structure fire and E-15 reported heavy smoke while responding. Upon arrival the lieutenant (Ed Taylor) called a 2nd alarm and advised it easily go to more. The responding battalion chief also requested mutual aid from Winter Haven and Lakeland for ladder trucks. Chief 4 (myself) arrived before the battalion chief and command was passed to me. The fire was quickly overrunning the fire pump fed sprinkler system (still investigating why) so the strategy quickly shifted to protecting the fire wall to contain the fire to the fire building. The company turned cardboard blanks into boxes for produce, mainly strawberries and the stock was stacked high. Gusty winds were also a problem and fire brands were an issue throughout the night. Master streams were limited in their reach due to the size of the building and positioning of apparatus was also a problem due to the layout. Using the preplan, crews are positioned in the exposure to monitor the fire wall while exterior streams worked to keep the fire off of the firewall. There was some penetration into the other building, but it was easily handled.
In short, no injuries of civilian or firefighting personnel, mutual aid worked well, the company loss about 21 million between building, stock and equipment, but a much larger, fully stocked warehouse was saved (hundreds of millions?).
Check out our website for some photos. http://www.polkfire.org
Raw footage from the fire here: mms://www.polkfl.com/fire/recker hig...ndows file.wmv
Polk Government Television (PGTV) piece: mms://www.polkfl.com/fire/datelinepolkpca.WMV