Two Maryland Firefighters Injured in Lonaconing Commercial Blaze

Feb. 10, 2005
A three alarm fire at 50 - 66 Main Street, Lonaconing, brought firefighters from across Allegany County, Maryland in response to the blaze.

Lonaconing, Maryland (February 5, 2005) -- A three alarm fire at 50 - 66 Main Street, Lonaconing, brought firefighters from across Allegany County, Maryland in response to the blaze. The 9:27 AM fire resulted in damage to numerous businesses located within three separate buildings including Valley Hair Ways, Tanner Bodies, Georges Creek Florist, and Coney Pizza. Three second floor apartments located above the storefronts also sustained significant damage that displaced the occupants from their homes.

The first arriving Engine-Rescue 20 from Goodwill (Lonaconing Co. 20) found heavy fire on side "Charlie" and light smoke showing on Side "Alpha" of the two story structure. R. Ritchie (Goodwill Chief 20) immediately requested a second alarm assignment and special requested an additional Truck Company.

Firefighters immediately mounted an aggressive interior attack and successfully knocked the heavy fire in the structure within 15 minutes of arrival. The remainder of the morning was spent digging out the hidden fire by pulling ceilings, walls and attempting to extinguish fire in the attic which was concealed by a flat roof added above the original peaked style roof.

Deputy State Fire Investigators Jason Mowbray, Jamie Rodeheaver, and Bruce Shafer determined the origin of the fire to have been located in the rear of the Tanner Bodies, tanning salon on the first floor at 62 Main Street. The area was being used for storage for several of the business. The cause of the fire was determined to have been a florescent light ballast that overheated and ignited combustibles in the ceiling area. Damage to all three buildings was estimated to total $250,000.

Two firefighters and a member of the Goodwill Ladies Auxiliary were injured. One firefighter and the auxiliary member were transported to Cumberland Memorial Hospital. The second firefighter was treated at the scene. The two firefighters were injured when the roof they were working on collapsed beneath them causing lower leg injuries, while the auxiliary member was injured in a ground level fall while delivering drinks to firefighters. None of the injuries were reported to be serious.

Companies Responding: Goodwill (Lonaconing Co. #20 Engine/Rescue, Tanker), Midland (Co. #18 Engine, Squad, Tanker), Barton (Co. 19 Engine/Tanker, Engine/Rescue), Potomac #2 (Westernport Co. 22 Engine/Tanker, Squad), Shaft (Co. 17 Engine), Tri-Towns Fire (Mineral County W.Va. Co. #24 Engine, Air Unit), Frostburg (Co. 16 Truck), Clarysville (Co. 14 Tanker, Air Unit), McCoole (Engine-Rescue 23), Bloomington (Co. #36 Tanker), LaVale (Co. #2 Tower), Keyser (Mineral County W.Va. Co. #33 Truck), Maryland State Fire Marshals FM20, FM21, FM22, George

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