Maryland Firefighters Tackle Difficult Fire

On Jan. 28, at approximately 3 p.m., Wicomico County Central alerted Station 3 (Fruitland) and Station 1 (Salisbury) for a structure fire at 4005 Meadow Bridge Road.

While companies were responding Wicomico Central advised that the Fruitland Police Department was on the scene confirming a working shed fire with propane tanks exposed. Engine 301, under the command of 3rd Assistant Engineer E. Pope, and a crew of 3 arrived and reported a working fire involving a 40' x 60' shed. Engine 1, commanded by (Acting) Lieutenant J. Jester, arrived shortly after Engine 301.

The crew of Engine 301 placed two 1-3/4-inch lines in service to begin darkening down the fire. When Fruitland Captain D. Elliott arrived and assumed command, he diverted Engine 1's crew from stretching a 1-3/4-inch line as well and reassigned the company to the roof, with Salisbury Assistant Chief B. Records. As access was being gained inside and to the roof, Engine 1-1, Squad 1 and two additional tankers from Station 3 were beginning to arrive.

Status reports from the initial crews confirmed difficult access to the fire. As a result, Command requested Truck 16 to assist with ventilation and provide additional personnel.

Engine 1-1, commanded by Lieutenant B. Fowler, arrived and was directed to position on Side "B" of the structure, leaving Side "C" for Truck 16, and to place a 1-3/4-inch line in operation.

Once inside, the crew of Engine 1-1 breeched a portion of the ceiling where they were operating. A smoke condition was all that was discovered. Truck 16 arrived and Captain B. Adams directed his crew to assist the Roof Sector in opening up and revealing the hidden fire. An additional engine company from Station 3, and Air Light 2 (Salisbury) were special-called to provide additional manpower and rehab.

After approximately an hour, the bulk of the fire was located and extinguished, as well as the extension. Extensive overhaul was required occupying crews on the fire scene for a total of 3-1/2 hours. The fire marshal was called to scene for the investigation and it was revealed the cause of the fire was from a burn pile that had extended into the structure.

Delmarva Power was requested to the scene for utility control. One firefighter received a minor foot injury and was later treated and released from Peninsula Regional Medical Center.

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