Liverpool house fire destroys home, spreads through brush

Liverpool house fire destroys home, spreads through brush

10 April 2009

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USA — A structure fire that spread into a nearby wooded area of Dixonville brought many of the area fire departments together to help battle the blazes.

The Liverpool Township volunteer fire department received the alert around 3 p.m. Thursday. It was initially designated as a unknown fire at 2248 Dewey Avenue ext.

But Liverpool Township Fire Chief Mike Bahen said once he reached the station in LaCroft, he knew he was up against an inferno as he saw the smoke billowing into the sky from the station some five miles away from the scene.

“It came in as an unknown fire, but I could see it from LaCroft so it wasn’t unknown,” Bahen said.

Fire departments from Glenmoor, Lawrenceville, Wellsville, East Liverpool, Newell, Chester and Calcutta were also called in for mutual aid.

Liverpool Township first responder firefighters first encountered a mishap as Engine 21 became stranded just yards from the driveway after a culvert collapsed as the truck was passing over it.

The engine was still functional and the volunteers were close enough to the structure fire to still be able to use the hoses and tools.

The fire completely destroyed the home leaving about half of the homestead without any support structures or a roof.

The intense heat and size of the fire allowed it to spread to the brush, just several feet away from the back of the home. The fire spread up the steep hillside, igniting some trees and parts of the undergrowth.

East Liverpool city firefighters rushed to the Hollywood Avenue and Lee Street neighborhood area to stand by in case the blazes ripped all the way through the wooded area, but the fire was contained before it reached the hilltop neighborhood.

With several engines lining up the roadway, the firefighters were able to battle the fires from three different areas as pumper trucks were parked near the driveway and in a neighbor’s lot.

To battle the brush fire, firefighters scaled the hillside and were able to quell much of the flames. The steep terrain and brush made containing the fires harder for the volunteers and one Glenmoor firefighter was treated at the scene by Lifeteam EMS Ambulance service.

According to Glenmoor Captain Bill Bennett, the individual hurt his knee after falling on the hillside.

Some volunteers were still battling the rekindling of flames around 10 p.m and indicated some areas may continue to burn or smolder over night.

Homeowner Alvin Coil said he was only away from the home for about an hour before he was advised of the fire. His wife was also away from the home and no one else was inside at the time of the fire.

Coil was joined by his son, grandson and other family members just after 3:30 p.m.

The cause of the fire is under investigation and Coil noted that he was not cooking anything before he left his home that afternoon.

Liverpool Township Police Chief Charlie Burgess and other township officers also assisted at the Dewey Avenue scene.

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