Pa. Crews Tackle Building Fire

On Sunday, July 24, the Bradford City, Pa., Fire Department was dispatched to a structure fire at DeFrank Appliances located at 144 Davis Street.

This was a mixed-use occupancy that included a storefront, apartments and a warehouse. The buildings were all of wood construction, of varying heights and interconnected. They were originally constructed in the 1940s as part of a lumber mill.

The Bradford City Fire Department was dispatched at 6:41 p.m., and responded with Tower 1, a 70 foot Tower Ladder with a 2,000-gpm pump and Engine 1, a 1,500-gpm pumper with five firefighters under the command of Captain Dave Paul.

He immediately requested a second-alarm.

Ten off-duty city firefighters responded with Engine 2, a 1,250-gpm pumper, four ALS ambulances and a paramedic unit.

The second alarm also brought Bradford Township Volunteer Fire Department Rescue Engine 151, a 1,500-gpm pumper and crew to the scene under the command of Fire Chief Dan Burkhouse.

Tower 1 was supplied with a 250 foot, five-inch hydrant supply line and firefighters placed a 100 foot, three inch blitz fire attack line and a 150 foot, one and three quarter inch attack line into operation on side D of the building.

As the fire was advancing from the warehouse area into the apartment and storefront areas, all efforts were initially directed towards stopping the fire spread to these areas.

An additional 150 foot, one -and-three-quarter inch attack line was advanced to the second floor apartment from Tower 1. Engine 151 was positioned on the A side and was supplied by a 300 foot, five inch hydrant supply line. The crew from Engine 151 was directed to advance a 200 foot, two and one half inch attack line down the B side of the building to stop the fire spread. The effectiveness of crew on the B side of the building was hampered by arcing power lines.

A 200-foot, one and three-quarter inch attack line was also stretched into the apartments from this engine. After conferring with Angell about the fire conditions and the high temperature and humidity conditions, Burkhouse ordered a full department response from Bradford Township.

With the use of interior hand lines and exterior hand lines and master streams, firefighters were successful in stopping the spread of the fire.

Although the warehouse was destroyed, damage to the apartments and storefront was limited to smoke and water damage.

The cause of the fire is under investigation by the Pennsylvania State Police fire Marshal.