The Beverly Fire Department reports a fire in a dryer last evening at The Oceanview, 3 Essex St, at 2315 hours. Employees were drying kitchen rags which caught fire causing an extensive smoke condition on all floors. The fire was mostly extinguished by an employee using a small dry chemical extinguisher and fire department personnel completed the effort. The fire was contained to the dryer. Fire department personnel were on scene for slightly over one hour removing smoke from the building.
Lt. Donald Philpot
Building Fire at 399 Essex St
At 0310 on April 23, 2010, the Beverly Fire Department received a fire alarm activation for 399 Essex St, Turtle Woods. Upon arrival, crews found indication for a smoke detector activation in a 4th floor trash room. Crews also detected an odor of smoke in the first floor hallway.
Upon further investigation, Lt. Donald Philpot and the crew of Engine 5 found a slight smoke condition in the fourth floor trash room. Additional crews found a moderate smoke condition in the first floor trash room. Within minutes, firefighters found a fire above an exterior door leading into the first floor trash room. Crews were able to knock down the visible fire with a fire extinguisher and began to pull the siding and sheathing away from the building to insure there was no spread of fire to the interior of the building.
Inside the building, Lt. Kevin Smith worked with his crew on Truck 1 to move occupants to safe areas within the building near exits. Due to the nature of the occupants and the determination that the fire was confined to the immediate area above the door, no mass evacuation was ordered.
Once the fire was extinguished, crews from Engine 1, Engine 5 and Truck 1 worked inside the building to make sure all smoke was blown out of the building and to assess occupants that complained of breathing problems as a result of the smoke. A total of three occupants were assessed by Beverly Firefighters and Northeast Regional Paramedics. One of those occupants was transported to Beverly Hospital for an asthma attack.
All units were clear of the scene by 0432. The fire was caused by faulty electrical wiring to an exterior light above the trash room door. An estimated $5,000 damage was confined to the exterior wall at the rear of the building.
The building is a four story residential complex for seniors. There are 67 units in the building, which is valued at more than $3,750,000. Many residents left the building for the incident, but others were kept in safe areas with no smoke as unnecessary evacuation might have aggravated medical conditions.
At 1637 on April 14, the Beverly Fire Department dispatched Engine 3 to the area of 502 Hale St for a report of a possible outside fire. Due to the uncertainty of the actual location, Car 2 also responded to the area to aid in the search. The location reported is on Hale St. just prior to the West end of Thissell St extending back to Endicott College and landmark School.
After a brief search, Car 2 located the fire and requested Engine 3 to respond to Landmark School’s property for best access. At that time an additional crew was requested to help at the scene. As the fire area was surveyed, it was determined that due to the size of the fire and location in the woods, a third company was requested to the scene.
When Engine 3 arrived on Landmark property, the crew immediately advanced 600 feet of 21/2 inch supply hose into the woods then attached two 400 foot forestry attack lines to the supply line. Assisted by Car 4, and Engine 5, all crews worked in the area extinguishing the fire and digging out hot spots for three hours. A total of 9 firefighters operated at the scene.
In the middle of the fire, was a large radio tower. For the safety of the crews on scene, Endicott College personnel were notified of the operation and the tower was briefly shut down.
The fire was most likely caused by natural heat from the sun igniting dry surface materials and probably burned for several hours before being noticed.
Crews from Wenham and Manchester covered the city while Beverly crews were tied up.
Per Hovem, Chief Paul Cotter, and James Furrier
Landmark Students Win Video Contest for Burn Awareness Campaign
BEVERLY, MA – In its second year, the statewide contest for high school media students, The YouTube Burn Awareness Video Contest, brought some attention to the NorthShore when two students from LandmarkSchool were awarded honorable mentions for their submission, Electrical Fires, Fireworks, and Burn Injuries.
Over 30 teams, representing nine high schools around the state, submitted entries to the contest. The two awardees from LandmarkHigh School are James Furrier and Per Hovem, a sophomore and senior respectively. On Tuesday, April 13 they were visited by Chief Paul Cotter from the Beverly Fire Department and awarded their certificates (see attached photo).
The program was initiated by the State Fire Marshall, Stephen D. Coan and Thomas D’Esmond, Administrator, ShrinersHospitals for Children Boston. The contest is sponsored by the state Department of Fire Services, the Mass. Association of Safety and Fire Educators (MA SAFE), and the Mass. Property Insurance Underwriting Association.
“There are many negative, false and just plain scary messages about fire and burns in the videos teenagers make and watch on the Internet,” said Fire Marshal Coan. “Our goal is to allow teenagers to research the truth for themselves without being lectured to by adults and without getting hurt.”
Directed by their teacher, William Swift, Furrier and Hovem embarked on the project as their first of the term. Swift learned about the contest and helped his students enter their work. They were all quite surprised when they realized they won.
“We will continue to enter this contest each year. It’s a great project for our kids to work on. It helps them develop their skills, build confidence, and brings awareness to this important and misunderstood cause.”
Burn video information and photo courtesy of Landmark School
Keep Your Wood Wet!
Even with all the recent rain, some surface materials will burn after a few days of sun and heat. Already the Beverly Fire Department has responded to mulch and dry vegetation fires. In one case, the materials were up against a house and an alert homeowner called 911 before the fire extended to the structure. Keep vegetation and mulch away from your home and make sure to keep your wood wet to prevent ignition!
Firefighter Jason Terry wets down a mulch fire next to a home
2 Alarm Fire at 53 Matthies St
Photo's Courtesy of Chris Besse
At 1556 on April 8, the Beverly Fire Department was dispatched to number 53 Matthies St for a report of a fire in the house. Truck 2 arrived at the scene first with Lt. Arthur Fitzpatrick and Firefighters Joe Tucker and Patrick Brady. Lt. Fitzpatrick reported smoke coming from the front door and ordered his crew to stretch a hose through the front door to attack the fire. Captain Russell Halloran was second to arrive finding heavy fire coming from a first floor window at the rear of the home and requested a second alarm bringing Hamilton, Salem and Wenham to the scene of the fire.
Within six minutes of their arrival on scene, Firefighter Joe Tucker and the crew of Truck 2 had made significant progress inside the home knocking down the majority of the fire leaving remaining crews to check for fire extension in different parts inside and outside the home. Due to the quick work of Truck 2, the majority of the damage was confined to the kitchen area of the home with only minor extension.
Fire Investigator William Walsh conducted an investigation determining that the occupant of the home had been cooking food in vegetable on the stove top and unintentionally left the stove top on with the pan of oil still in place when he left the room. The oil continued to heat until it reached its ignition temperature and caught fire. The occupant made an unsuccessful attempt to extinguish the fire with a fire extinguisher and called 911.
Damage to the building and contents was estimated at $125,000 but no one suffered any injuries at the scene. The occupants were displaced and are reportedly staying with family members.
Cooking fires remain the leading cause of residential home fires in the United States* and overheated oils are a common source. It is very important to make sure that food cooking on the stove is never left unattended and that all burners are properly shut off and combustible oils are covered with a tight lid or properly disposed of to prevent inadvertent ignition.
All fire department personnel were clear of the scene by 1754.
Informational Note: Truck 2 is a reserve truck that was in service at the North Beverly Station in place of Engine 5 which was having mechanical work done. * Source NFPA Informational Bulletin “Home Fires Involving Cooking Equipment”