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Aggressive Firefighting Tactics In Niverville Stops A Rapidly Spreading House Fire

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April 30, 2022 | NEW YORK JEFFREY BELSCHWINDER, Senior Correspondent
This article is a direct street report from our correspondent and has not been edited by the 1st Responder newsroom.

Niverville, NY - On April 30, 2022 at 12:18 PM, The Columbia County Emergency Communication Center received multiple calls for a reported structure fire at 105 West Road Extension. The dispatcher toned out the Niverville Fire Department, Kinderhook Fire Department, Chatham Fire Department, North Chatham Fire Department, East Chatham Fire Department, Claverack Fire Department, Valatie Fire Department, and the Valatie Rescue squad to the scene.

Niverville car one while in route to the scene heard a radio transmission from one of his firefighters responding to the fire station that they had smoke showing from across the lake. The chief immediately requested a tanker box to be dispatched bringing additional resources to the scene. Niverville car one arrived on scene and immediately transmitted the working fire dispatch and requested a second alarm bringing the Stuyvesant Fire Department, Nassau Fire Department, South Schodack Fire Department, and the Tri-Village Fire Department to the scene. Command quickly conducted his walk around of the incident scene and discovered he had heavy fire pushing from the rear of the structure with extension beginning to push into the house.

The first arriving engine on scene immediately took the driveway of the home and firefighters quickly dismounted from the engine and deployed a inch and three-quarter hand line down the driveway to the front of the house. Command requested the firefighters to go to the rear of the residence and quickly knock down the heavy fire condition on the exterior of the structure. As firefighters quickly knocked down the fire in the rear of the building, firefighters deployed the hand line through the front door of the house and right to the main fire room. Additional resources began to arrive on scene and additional hand lines began to be deployed to the rear of the residence. Firefighters quickly began to knock down the fire in the backyard area.

Multiple tankers quickly began to arrive on scene and assemble down the roadway. Multiple tankers quickly backed down the driveway and set up a steady water supply to the scene with over 15,000 gallons of water ready to supply firefighters with whatever water they may need. Additional tankers quickly established a supply line from a fire hydrant a few streets away. Fire Police shut down the roadways around the incident to allow for the tankers to adequately fill and drop their water off.

Firefighters in the rear portion of the yard notified all units operating on scene that there was an open well to use caution and firefighters quickly place cones around it and covered it with a board. As firefighters inside of the structure were making a push deeper inside of the building, firefighters made their way to the main fire room and quickly began to knock down the heavy fire condition. As firefighters used the hand lines in the structure water blew through the rear portion of the roof. Firefighters began to start to pull the ceilings down inside of the structure and make their way further into the back area of the house. Firefighters were quickly able to bring the fire under control in the rear portion of the house.

As firefighters were conducting suppression operations and overhaul, firefighters learned the back portion of the house had severe structural damage to the floor and firefighters still had fire below them. Firefighters on the exterior rear portion of the house took a hand line underneath the porch and began to knock down all of the remaining fire. Firefighters conducted extensive overhaul of the house that suffered heavy damage in the rear portion of it. Investigators arrived on scene and began to conduct their investigation into what caused the fire. As firefighters finished working in the house they went over to rehab to rehydrate, change their bottles, and wait for further instructions in the staging area.

Firefighters remained on scene for an extended period of time. The fire was quickly brought under control in about 20 minutes. All of the residents inside of the home made it out safely. No injuries were reported. Due to the quick actions of the first arriving engine on scene firefighters were able to save a significant amount of the residents personal belongings. Fire Investigator‘s were able to determine that the fire was caused by a burn pit in the backyard that spread to a nearby chicken coop that spread to the rear portion of the house. The fire was deemed accidental.

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