Sunday, February 12, 2012

Boston firefighters battle multi alarm blaze

Just before 6 AM this morning Boston fire firefighters answered the call once again on a cold windy morning for a reported fire near 148 Chestnut Hill Ave in the Brighton section of the city Engine 29 and Ladder 11 were instantly on scene as the station sits across the street and reported they had heavy smoke issuing from the rear of a 1 story taxpayer (commercial building) housing a catering company, janitorial supply company, a laundromat and a pizza shop. The second alarm was ordered following the arrival of the chief and immediately exterior operations were put into play due to the rapidly deteriorating conditions. Additional companies arrived and ladder pipes from Tower Ladder 3 and Ladder 15 and a master stream from Ladder 11 were put to work.

Around 8 AM the chief requested the 3rd alarm and also an MBTA bus to assist in transporting firefighters who were arriving for work at their stations to get to the scene as the fire continued to rage thru shift change. H4 (tactical response unit) was also utilized in this effort as well. There was also reports from the scene of explosions inside the building. My guess is a result of the cleaning company located there and the product located inside spontaneously combusted. The fire continued to ravage thru this business and break through the fire wall once again into the next business. At this point in time the building was fully engulfed & flames were shooting through the roof. 1 FF was also transported to a local hospital for treatment of minor injuries to his face and eyes

The exterior attack continued for at least another 90 minutes and the chief ordered the 4th alarm due to conditions and severe water issues. Around 11:30 a State Police helicopter arrived above the scene and offered the assistance of a video down link to the tactical communications unit (TCU) for command to see what the roof looked like. Air 2 reported to command that the HVAC unit on the west side of the building was in danger of collapsing. They however were having issues transmitting due to signal issues and Air 3 went airborne and headed for the scene.

At 12 PM the chief reported the bulk of the heavy fire was knocked down and operations were still defensive. Also it was reported via radio traffic that the use of foam was used to aid in the fire fight. Sump pumps were also requested to the scene in fear of neighboring buildings such as 7 Embassy Rd flooding out due to the amount of water being used for the fire fight.

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