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Friday, July 20, 2012 at 4:57 pm

Moderate drought conditions elevate fire danger

post by Howard B. Owens in drought, fire, weather

With moderate drought conditions in Genesee County, state and local officials are warning residents of unsafe fire conditions.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued a statewide residential open-fire ban last week, and today, Tim Yaeger, Genesee County Emergency Services, urged residents to use caution with any type of fire.

While a small cooking or camping fire is permitted, larger fires, such as a bonfire are out of the question, Yaeger said.

All fires should be no closer than 50 feet to a structure and some sort of extinguishing agent should be within 50 feet of the fire.

"That's the New York Fire code anyway, but we don't want to wind up with the possibility of a fire spreading," Yaeger said.

This time of year, the kind of open burns associated with rural areas and agriculture aren't too common, but people still might be tempted to start fires for recreational purposes and in those cases, extreme caution is in order.

On average, Batavia received about 3.5 inches of rain in July. So far this month, not even a half inch has fallen and precipitation totals for the year are off by more than six inches from average.

The lack of precipitation creates another problem for firefighters -- less available water to fight fires in areas without municipal water.

Typically, when there are no hydrants to connect to, firefighters draw water from nearby creeks and retention ponds.

Yaeger said what he's seen of retention ponds and other standing water sources is that water levels remain adequate but are getting low.

Drawing water from brooks and streams right now might be more difficult for firefighters.

"Brooks and streams are pretty much out of service right now," Yaeger said. "Luckily, in this county, with the additional municipal water services has eased the burden from what it was 10 or 15 years ago."

If there is a fire with current water supply conditions in an area without municipal water, Yaeger said, it will mean scene commanders will need to request additional tankers from mutual-aid departments in order to maintain an adequate water supply to fight any type of fire.

All residential brush burning is banned in the state through Oct. 10.

In issuing the ban, Cuomo said, "These conditions should not be taken lightly. The potential for disastrous wildfires is present in all areas of the state and we must do whatever we can to prevent fires from occurring.

"The state will continue to closely monitor the wildfire danger and we will deploy whatever resources are necessary to protect New Yorkers should a critical situation occur."

Thursday, July 19, 2012 at 11:09 am

Brush fire in woods behind College Village

post by Billie Owens in batavia, fire

A grass fire is reported in the woods behind the College Village apartments. Town of Batavia Fire Department is responding. College Village is located at 8170 Batavia Stafford Townline Road.

Thursday, July 19, 2012 at 10:29 am

Wendy's shut down after fire call prompts investigation

post by Billie Owens in batavia, fire

About an hour ago, a small kitchen fire was reported at the Wendy's restaurant on Main Street in the City of Batavia. The automatic alarm system notified emergency dispatch of the incident. City firefighters responded and investigated. They then called for representatives from code enforcement and the health department to come to the scene. Wendy's is closed temporarily so their inspections can be done.

UPDATE 4:50 p.m.: Wendy's reopened for business at 3 p.m.
Thursday, July 19, 2012 at 7:22 am

Smoke reported inside residence in Oakfield

post by Howard B. Owens in fire, Oakfield

Oakfield Fire Department is responding to a report of smoke in the bathroom at 32 Bennett Ave., Oakfield.

UPDATE 8:27 a.m.: A burned out light fixture is reported.

UPDATE 8:35 a.m.: Oakfield back in service.

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Friday, July 13, 2012 at 3:18 pm

Tractor-trailer with brakes on fire in front of Kiwanis Park, Batavia

post by Billie Owens in batavia, fire

A tractor-trailer's brakes are reportedly on fire on Route 5, in front of Kiwanis Park. It is hauling another trailer. Smoke is coming from the tractor, according to a responder at the scene. Town of Batavia Fire Department is en route.

UPDATE 4:36 p.m.: The fire is out. Town of Batavia is back in service.

Friday, July 13, 2012 at 2:01 pm

Possible electrical fire in wall of Bethany home

post by Billie Owens in Bethany, fire

A possible electrical fire in a wall is reported at a residence at 4646 Conway Road in Bethany. The owner reports an outlet is hot and he smells smoke. No flames are showing. A Bethany firefighter on scene confirms nothing is showing. Alexander is also responding, non-emergency mode.

UPDATE 3:04 p.m.: They are going to scan the wall with an infrared camera.

UPDATE 3:12 p.m.: Alexander is returning, in service.

UPDATE 3:22 p.m.: The problem has been handled. Bethany is back in service.

Thursday, July 12, 2012 at 3:09 pm

Field fire in Elba off Drake Street Road

post by Billie Owens in batavia, byron, elba, fire

A field fire is reported at 4271 Drake St. Road in Elba. Elba Fire Department is responding. The location is between South Main Street and Weatherwax Road. Fire equipment from the towns of Oakfield, Batavia and Byron are also requested.

UPDATE 4:11 p.m.: Drake Street Road and Weatherwax are being shut down.

UPDATE 4:16 p.m.: Fire police are stationed at routes 262 and 98. A Bergen tanker is requested to fill in at Byron's hall. The wind is 10 mph out of the east.

UPDATE 5:01 p.m.: Batavia and Oakfield are back in service.

UPDATE 5:06 p.m.: The fire is out. Elba, Byron and Bergen are back in service. The roadway is reopened.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012 at 4:36 pm

Large metal bin on fire at scrap yard

post by Billie Owens in corfu, east pembroke, fire

A roll-off metal scrap bin is on fire at Eddy Arnold Scrap Processors, Inc., located at 2216 Angling Road in Corfu. East Pembroke Fire Department is responding. The bin is next to the office.

UPDATE 5:53 p.m.: The fire is out. They are checking for hot spots.

UPDATE 6:05 p.m.: East Pembroke is back in service.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012 at 8:58 pm

Batavia city and town firefighters responding to controlled burn on Bank Street

post by Billie Owens in batavia, fire

A controlled burn at 311 Bank St. is requiring the response of city firefighters and mutual aid from the Town of Batavia. According to authorities, this address has previously been advised regarding the requirements of controlled burns.

UPDATE 10:30 p.m. (approximately): Fire is out.

Saturday, July 7, 2012 at 9:39 am

Shed fire reported on Bethany Center Road, East Bethany

post by Howard B. Owens in Bethany, fire

A shed fire is reported at 10330 Bethany Center Road, East Bethany.

Bethany Fire Department with mutual aid from Town of Batavia responding.

UPDATE 10:41 a.m.: Homeowner appears to have put out the fire with a garden hose.

UPDATE 10:45 a.m.: Town of Batavia back in service.

UPDATE 11:05 a.m.: A Bethany tanker has gone back in service.

UPDATE 11:16 a.m.: Bethany is back in service.

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