Brought to you by WBIW News and Network Indiana
Last updated on Tuesday, May 8, 2012
(HARRODSBURG) - Firefighters from the area battled a blaze at a modular home in the 1200 block of Harrodsburg Road.
Volunteer firefighters from Perry, Marshal, Oolitic, Indian Creek in Lawrence County and Indian Creek, in Monroe counties responded to the blaze that was reported around 8 p.m.
Firefighters were on the scene until 3 a.m. Sunday morning.
Perry Fire Chief Max Peters is looking for the owners of the home.
"No one was at the home and it looks like the owners are remodeling it," Peters says. "The only utilities on was the electricity and there were dirty dishes in the sink, so we know someone was there at one point. The neighbors were not sure who owns the home and I have not received any calls from possible owners."
The fire started between two ceiling making it difficult for firefighters to extinguish the blaze.
"There as the manufactured ceiling which was burning off and then another plaster board ceiling and the fire was trapped between those two layers," Peters says. "We were trying to shoot thousands of gallons of water between an 8 inch gap. It was an impossible job."
Firefighters tore down the plaster ceiling but it didn't help much.
"We still couldn't get to the fire," Peters added.
Peters says the fire was probably electrical in nature.
Damage to the home was substantial.
"Manufactured homes are not designed to withstand fire," Peters says. "They have chip board for flooring and once that gets wet it's pretty well gone. And with the amount of water we used, there was no saving it. What the fire didn't destroy the water did."
Firefighters pumped more than 25,000 gallons of water on the blaze.
"That is a rough estimate," Peters says. "It could have been much more."
Besides the fire, firefighters had to battle the heat and humidity.
"You go into a home with the temperatures climbing to more than 150 degrees and there is steam from the water and hot water running down on top of you," Peters says. "Firefighters are dressed in turnout gear and they protect you from the fire, but they also hold in the heat. It gets so hot in some of these buildings the reflective tape on the suits melts right off."
Tops and Rural Metro Ambulance service set up a recovery area for firefighters at the scene.
"We set up a recovery area where firefighters could get out of their gear and cool down," Peters says. "EMS keep a close eye on firefighters while TOPS kept us in water and sports drinks. I know we went through at least five cases or more of water alone. That doesn't count the sports drinks."
Peters says the community doesn't know how much firefighters depend on TOPS and what an asset it is to the county.
"I really don't know what we would do without TOPS," Peters says. "We just couldn't do this job without them. It's not like you can run somewhere at 3 a.m. in the morning for water and food. Boomer is a lifesaver for firefighters and we can always count on him being there."
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