Shortly after 9 a.m. Monday, companies in the Prince George's County (MD) 6th Battalion were dispatched for the building fire at 9118 Edmonston Court, in the Springhill Lake apartment complex. This apartment building is across a courtyard and street from an earlier three-alarm fire (9150 Edmonston Court) that displaced approximately three dozen occupants a little after midnight.
First arriving Volunteer Chief Officer Charles Bailey of Company 11 (Branchville) reported smoke showing from a three-story garden style apartment. This was immediately followed with the dispatching of the working fire assignment and a subsequent second alarm. Career Fire Battalion Chief 6 arrived, assumed Incident Command and assigned Chief Bailey to Operations.
Despite the layout of the apartment buildings and limited apparatus access, crews made an aggressive attack on the fire and extension. Initial truck companies jockeyed for the best positioning while throwing numerous ground ladders.
Once the extension was checked, truck companies performed overhaul to open up pipe chases and void spaces. While this work was being scaled down and units were taking up and being placed in service, P.G. Public Safety Communications received a call for an odor of smoke in 9144 Edmonston Court, directly across from the initial three-alarm fire.
A member assigned to the Emergency Operations Center investigated and directed the crew of Engine Company 31 (Beltsville) as they extinguished a small electrical fire in a basement apartment. Command officers worked with the electrical company to identify those apartments using the same service.
Companies in service and on the scene were assigned to check the basements and attics of the identified buildings.
Springhill Lake is one of the largest apartment complexes in Prince George's County and is composed of hundreds of garden style apartments, many of which will have to be checked to prevent another multiple alarm fire. In all, approximately four dozen occupants were displaced. Fire and EMS personnel operated without incurring any injuries.
On Tuesday, March 27, a box alarm was struck for another fire in the Springhill Lake apartment complex. First arriving companies quickly located and extinguished a fire in a basement apartment.
As of Wednesday, March 28, the series of fires and electrical concerns in the apartment complex have resulted in approximately 1,200 occupants being asked to vacate. Some have choosen to remain in the buildings while others are being sheltered at the Ritchie Coliseum on the campus of the University of Maryland, College Park.
Additional information can be read at http://www.bvfco11.com/.