Do Fire Stations Ever Catch Fire?

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Of course, the answer is of course. Life is just ironic that way. What's surprising however is how many stations have gone up in smoke, and how often it happens. Just this year, for instance, a firefighter in Japan, in haste, left the stove on while cooking dinner in the firehouse on the way out to fight a blaze. Ten fire trucks from other, nearby stations, had to put out the firehouse fire. Perhaps the guilty fireman should consider ordering-in for dinner from now on?

Closer to home, also this year, a fire broke out in a Capitol Heights, Maryland fire station. This one started in a fire truck engine. When an initial automatic fire alarm was sounded, volunteer firefighters on duty at the time foolishly cancelled it. Five minutes later, they were on the phone with dispatch requesting backup. Eight minutes after that, firefighters from a nearby station were on the scene, putting out the blaze.

Also in Maryland (Largo, to be exact), even more recently (May 19th, to be exact), the Bladensburg fire station caught fire when wiring inside the ladder truck went up in smoke. There were two fire station fires in Illinois not too long ago, as well. In Elwood on August 26,1995, a fire station caught fire and burned to the ground. And in Fillmore, a tiny community southeast of Springfield, another fire station caught fire and burned to the ground.

More recently, Pennsylvania had a lulu of its own. On July 7th, the Strattanville Volunteer Fire Department was alerted to a roof fire at its own station. The cause? Arson! When the two guys who started the fire were caught and brought into the police station, one of them said he lit his boxer shorts on fire and then threw them onto the roof of the fire station, adding that he "thought it would be funny" if the fire station caught fire.

Of course, there's nothing funny about any of these fires, but it does make you think. And ask other questions, like: who delivers the mail to a post office? Food for thought on this Labor Day...

September 6, 2009 - 12:05pm
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