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Monday, March 10, 2014 at 9:34 pm

Brush fire reported off Transit Road, Byron

post by Howard B. Owens in byron, fire

A brush fire is reported in the area of 6063 Transit Road, Byron.

Byron and South Byron were dispatched more than 10 minutes ago and are on scene.

A brush truck from Elba was just requested to the scene.

UPDATE 9:43 p.m.: Elba requested to fill in at Byron's hall.

UPDATE 9:54 p.m.: Mercy EMS requested to the scene. Unknown reason.

UPDATE 10:27 p.m.: Elba's tanker is back in service.

CORRECTION: It was the brush truck from Elba, not a Mercy ambulance requested to the scene.

Monday, March 10, 2014 at 6:05 pm

Photo: Darien fire rekindle

post by Howard B. Owens in Darien, fire

Brittany Hodge sent his picture of the rekindle of this morning's fire at 1363 Broadway, Darien.

There have been a couple of rekindles today, but this one required both Darien fire and Corfu fire to be dispatched, along with a fill-in by Pembroke at Corfu's hall.

UPDATE 6:10 p.m.: Alexander fire has been dispatched to the rekindle.

Previously:

Monday, March 10, 2014 at 3:42 pm

'Training just kicks in' as volunteers help evacuate their burning apartment building in Darien

post by Howard B. Owens in Darien, fire

A classic, fully restored Harley was lost, as well as a restored Jeep. Six residents lost their personal belongings. The apartment building at 1363 Broadway, Darien, was destroyed.

Sadly, a dog lost his life.

But no people were seriously hurt, or worse.

That bit of good fortunate is a credit, it seems, to the professionalism of two members of the Darien Volunteer Fire Department who lived in the apartment building.

Joshua Reeb and Paul Redden were home when the fire broke out sometime around 4:30 a.m.

Redden smashed through Reeb's door and woke his fellow volunteer. He said he smelled smoke. Reeb felt the door into the hallway. At that point, he said, his fire training kicked in.

"It was all fire training," Reeb said. "I knew right away from the smell and the heat it was a real one. It wasn't somebody burning something. It was real."

Reeb and Redden helped alert the other residents, including the landlord, who owned the building and had lived in the main apartment for 30 years. Reeb helped him down the second-floor fire escape.

"I knew I had to get out and I had to get out now," Reeb said.

The two volunteers then rushed to the Darien fire hall -- less than a half-mile away -- and got their trucks "ready to rock and roll."

"I knew I wasn't going to be able to fight this fire," Reeb said. "But I knew I could get to the hall, open the doors, get the truck ready and let other people take over."

It was pitch black coming out of the apartment onto the fire escape. Knowing the layout, staying calm, not trying to grab his belongings, and being aware of what was going on around him made all the difference, said the 22-year-old Reeb, who has been a volunteer for five years.

"The training just takes over," Reeb said. "There's no fear. It's just respect for the fire, knowing I've got to do this and I've got to do this. All of that training just kicks in. It didn't hit me until I saw the flames coming out of my bedroom window and then it took me to the ground."

The initial investigation indicates the fire originated in the basement garage where fumes from spilled gasoline may have ignited when a hot water heater kicked on.

The building was owned by Scott Gielow, a mechanic who had converted his basement into a garage where he restored the vehicles he loved -- Harleys and Jeeps. In addition to losing the restored vehicles, he had two Jeeps that were still projects.

The fire was reported at 4:35 a.m. and as soon as Darien Chief Jim Marino got on scene he called for a second alarm. Flames were shooting out of the back of the building.

Two residents suffered minor burns and were treated at the scene.

The century-old structure was balloon construction with no insulation. Aluminum siding helped contain the fire to the interior of the building, but the flames just shot up the walls, unhindered by the kind of blocks between floors used in more modern buildings.

New hot spots seemed to flare up faster than firefighters could pour water on other involved parts of the building.

"The nature of the fire, the wind, the balloon construction, where it started, just made it hard to attack," Marino said.

Marino said it sounded like Reeb and Redden did a good job of making sure everybody got out of the building safely.

"It could have been a lot worse," Marino said.

Responding departments included Darien, Alexander, City of Batavia (Fast Team), Town of Batavia, Corfu, Pembroke, Alden and Bennington. Marcy EMS and Darien Ambulance also responded and deputies were on scene.

The Red Cross is assisting the displaced residents.

UPDATE 4:52 p.m.: Darien has been dispatched for a possible rekindle of the fire. It's the second rekindle this afternoon.

UPDATE 4:54 p.m.: Per chief, all units can remain in quarters.

UPDATE 5:29 p.m.: Darien and Corfu dispatched for a rekindle.

Joshua Reeb looks over the damage to the apartment building where he had been living.

To order prints of photos, click here.

Monday, March 10, 2014 at 6:15 am

Smoke coming from basement on Bethany Center Road

post by Billie Owens in Bethany, fire, Stafford

Smoke in the basement is reported at 10423 Bethany Center Road. The location is between Cackner and Jerico roads. Bethany Fire Department is responding along with mutual aid from Stafford.

UPDATE 6:26 a.m.: Stafford is told to stand down.

UPDATE 6:36 a.m.: Issue resolved. Bethany is back in service.

Monday, March 10, 2014 at 4:41 am

Apartment on fire with three people possibly trapped inside on Broadway Road, Darien

post by Billie Owens in Darien, fire

A structure fire with possible injuries is reported at 1363 Broadway Road. There are flames coming from the basement of an apartment building and there are three people trapped inside. Darien Fire Department is responding along with Mercy medics.

UPDATE 4:47 a.m.: All occupants are out of the building. It is a two-story wooden structure with flames now shooting out of the second story. The incident has gone to a second alarm, with two engines and a rescue unit from Corfu called to scene along with the city's Fast Team and equipment from Alexander. A fill-in crew from East Pembroke is requested to Corfu's Fire Hall. Traffic is being shut down at Route 77 and Warner Road.

UPDATE 5:04 a.m.: Traffic is also being shut down at Route 77 and Harlow Road.

UPDATE 5:56 a.m.: The fire is showing periodic flames at this point and heavy smoke. Interior crews from Pembroke and Indian Falls are called in.

UPDATE 6:19 a.m.: Town of Batavia fire is requested to the scene in emergency mode, to stage in Darien Fire Hall.

UPDATE 6:30 a.m.: Flames and heavy smoke still spewing from the structure, which is quite old and has "balloon construction." This is frustrating the firefighters' efforts to douse the blaze. They put out flames in one spot and the fire climbs up the wall to another place. Alabama is asked to fill in at Indian Falls Fire Hall.

UPDATE 6:49 a.m.: There were four six residents in this building comprised of five apartments. All got out safely, but one man's dog perished in the fire. Two of the tenants are volunteer firefighters for Darien and both were both home at the time.

UPDATE 7:47 a.m.: Howard, who is at the scene, interviewed one of the two volunteer firefighters, Joshua Reeb. Here's some of what he said:

"I was sleeping in my bed and my roommate, who happened to be awake, busted in my door, opened my door and said 'Come on, come on out. There's smoke. It smells like fire.' I woke up my girlfriend and said 'Grab your purse. You've got to go out the window.' I wasn't even going to try the door. I'm not going to risk it with that much smoke.

"I went to check on my neighbor -- he's older -- to make sure he could get out. He couldn't get out the front door so he went out the fire escape, which is connected to my neighbor's window. I came down the fire escape and made sure to get everybody out of the house. Got in my truck and went to the fire hall and got the (fire) truck prepped."

He credits his firefighting training with helping him to stay calm and provide direction. The other firefighter, "Paul," did likewise. Unlike another neighbor, Paul was able to save his dog. After making sure the occupants were safe, both went to the hall, which is just around the corner, to get things "ready to rock."

UPDATE 7:50 a.m.: They are still battling the fire, but there are fewer flames and a lot less smoke.

UPDATE 8 a.m.: The owner occupies the main apartment and has lived there 30 years. He's a mechanic and in his basement were a fully restored Jeep and a fully restored Harley-Davidson motorcycle and two other Jeeps that he was in the middle of restoring. All gone now.

UPDATE 8:09 a.m.: The Darien fire chief says the fire is knocked down. Overhauling the structure.

UPDATE 1:29 p.m.: The fire has reignited in some places and Darien Fire Department is responding.

Thursday, March 6, 2014 at 9:53 pm

Upstairs room ablaze in house on Oak Orchard Road, Elba

post by Billie Owens in elba, fire

An upstairs room is reportedly on fire at 6456 Oak Orchard Road, just north of Lockport Road. Elba Fire Department is responding.

UPDATE 8:56 p.m.: An engine from Barre is requested to provide mutual aid.

UPDATE 9:02 p.m.: The Town of Batavia is requested to provide equipment at the scene and a crew to stand by in Elba's hall. Also called for mutual aid are South Byron, Byron, Oakfield and Bergen.

UPDATE 9:13 p.m.: Elba command requests all equipment to continue in non-emergency mode.

UPDATE 9:35 p.m.: National Grid is called in; no ETA given.

UPDATE 10:06 p.m. (by Howard): Fire reported under control.

UPDATE 10:12 p.m. (by Howard): Information provided by Alecia Kaus, who is on scene: Chimney fire that got into the walls. Code enforcment on scene, trying to determine if the family can stay. No injuries. Seven fire companies responded, including two from Orleans County. Fire is out, doing overhaul and checking for extensions with thermal camera.

Phtoo by Alecia Kaus.

Friday, February 28, 2014 at 5:14 pm

Chimney fire reported on Broadway Road, Bethany

post by Billie Owens in Bethany, fire

A chimney fire is reported at 5901 Broadway Road. Bethany Fire Department is responding. The location is between East and Transit roads.

UPDATE 4:15 p.m.: Stafford fire is called to provide mutual aid.

UPDATE 4:20 p.m.: Stafford is told to remain in quarters.

UPDATE 4:33 p.m.: Bethany command tells Stafford to stand down.

UPDATE 5:06 p.m.: The assignment is back in service.

Friday, February 28, 2014 at 1:46 pm

Possible house fire on Davis Avenue in the city

post by Billie Owens in batavia, fire

Smoke is reportedly coming from the roof of a house at 12 Davis Ave. The residence is being evacuated. City Fire Deparartment is responding.

UPDATE 12:49 p.m.: City fire reports nothing showing. Investigating. It's a two-and-a-half story house.

UPDATE 12:55 p.m.: They searched the building. The smoke is actually steam coming off the roof. City fire is picking up and preparing to leave the scene.

Thursday, February 27, 2014 at 2:00 pm

House filling with smoke on Macomber Road, Alabama

post by Billie Owens in Alabama, fire

A house is reportedly filling with smoke at 6912 Macomber Road, Alabama. The location is between Judge and Ham roads. Alabama Fire Department is responding. Dispatch says it is possibly a chimney or wood stove problem.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014 at 10:43 pm

Structure fire reported on Route 19, Le Roy

post by Billie Owens in fire, Le Roy, Pavilion

A structure fire CO detector is activated at 9259 Route 19, in the area of Robbins Road, Le Roy. Le Roy Fire Department and Ambulance Service responding, with mutual aid from Pavilion standing by in quarters.

UPDATE 9:54 p.m.: This was a CO detector call, not a structure fire.

UPDATE 9:56 p.m.: Pavilion standing down.

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