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Heavy Fire Pushing from the Second-Floor on Arrival in Watervliet

This article is a direct street report from our correspondent and has not been edited by the 1st Responder newsroom.

WATERVLIET, NY - On September 23rd in the late evening hours, the city of Watervliet’s Fire Department along with mutual aid from the city of Cohoes Fire Department, Green Island Fire Department, and the Watervliet Arsenal Fire Department were dispatched to the area of Ninth Avenue and 24th Street for multiple calls for a reported structure fire. The first arriving police unit on scene immediately notified the dispatcher that he had a well-involved structure fire with heavy fire on the second-floor, and it was unknown if all of the occupants were out of the structure. The officer immediately made entry to the first-floor of the house and made sure everyone was out and made his way to the second-floor where he kicked in the door and yelled in as the room was quickly filling with heavy smoke.

The first arriving engine on scene immediately transmitted the Signal 30 for a working structure fire. Firefighters deployed a one-and-three-quarter-inch hand line up the back stairwell where firefighters were met with heavy fire pushing down on them. Firefighters quickly made entry to the structure and began to make an aggressive interior attack pushing back the fire. As firefighters continued to make an aggressive interior attack, additional units quickly began to arrive on scene. Firefighters quickly connected to the nearby fire hydrant, establishing a water supply as they still had a heavy fire condition on the second-floor of the structure. As firefighters from the truck company made their way to the roof, they discovered that the roof had numerous soft spots in it and it was not safe for firefighters to operate on it. Firefighters utilized the bucket of the ladder truck and began to vent the roof.

Firefighters inside of the structure deployed another hand line to the second-floor and began to extinguish all of the remaining visible fire. Police on the outside of the structure began to assist one of the fire victims that was overcome from the incident. The chief of the Watervliet fire department arrived on scene and took over command. A recall for the Cohoes, Green Island, and Watervliet Arsenal fire department was made for additional manpower to their stations. With numerous other calls going on in the city of Watervliet, it was difficult to get an ambulance to the scene. During the interior operations, one of the hand lines became severely damaged and firefighters shut down the hand line and quickly exchanged the length of hose out with another length.

Firefighters on scene began to conduct overhaul inside of the structure in order to gain access to the attic area where there was fire still visible from the exterior portion of the structure. Firefighters on scene requested an ambulance for the one individual outside of the building. Firefighters on the second-floor conducted a primary search of the building and did not come up with any human victims. Firefighters on the second-floor did discover the family's dog, which unfortunately did not survive. Firefighters on the second-floor continued to conduct overhaul for an extended period of time. Command requested national grid to the scene to cut the power and gas to the building and requested the New York State Office of Fire Prevention and Control fire investigation team to the scene.

Firefighters remained on scene until the early hours of the morning. The Watervliet Police Department deemed the fire suspicious in nature and has not released any updates on the fire and the investigation. One person was transported to the hospital from the scene and was listed in stable condition at the time of the fire. No firefighter injuries were reported.

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