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St. Louis Park Fire Reaches 5 Alarms, Firefighter Injured

St. Louis Park, Minnesota, Firefighter, Condominium Fire, Apartment Fire, Minnetonka Fire, Minneapolis Fire, Firefighter, Five Alarm Fire, Twin Cities Fire Wire

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St. Louis Park, Minnesota, Firefighter, Condominium Fire, Apartment Fire, Minnetonka Fire, Minneapolis Fire, Firefighter, Five Alarm Fire, Twin Cities Fire Wire

Josh Grubb Photo

St. Louis Park, Minnesota, Firefighter, Condominium Fire, Apartment Fire, Minnetonka Fire, Minneapolis Fire, Firefighter, Five Alarm Fire, Twin Cities Fire Wire

Josh Grubb Photo

St. Louis Park, Minnesota, Firefighter, Condominium Fire, Apartment Fire, Richfield Fire, Eden Prarie Fire, Edina Firefighter,, Twin Cities Fire Wire

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St. Louis Park, Minnesota, Firefighter, Condominium Fire, Apartment Fire, Richfield Fire, Eden Prarie Fire, Edina Firefighter,, Twin Cities Fire Wire

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St. Louis Park, Minnesota, Firefighter, Condominium Fire, Apartment Fire, Richfield Fire, Eden Prarie Fire, Edina Firefighter,, Twin Cities Fire Wire

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St. Louis Park, Minnesota, Firefighter, Condominium Fire, Apartment Fire, Richfield Fire, Eden Prarie Fire, Edina Firefighter,, Twin Cities Fire Wire

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St. Louis Park, Minnesota, Firefighter, Condominium Fire, Apartment Fire, Richfield Fire, Eden Prarie Fire, Edina Firefighter,, Twin Cities Fire Wire

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St. Louis Park, Minnesota, Firefighter, Condominium Fire, Apartment Fire, Richfield Fire, Eden Prarie Fire, Edina Firefighter,, Twin Cities Fire Wire

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The story as updated Wednesday morning

June 7 – More than a dozen fire departments were called to condominium complex fire in St. Louis Park on Tuesday, just as temperatures broke historic records.

The fire was reported at 4625 Minnetonka Blvd. around 3:30 p.m. and it brought auto aid from Edina and Richfield.

Firefighters found flames showing from the second floor of the three-story Nachez Place condominium complex. The fire extended from the second floor to the top floor before crews contained the fire.

St. Louis Park Spokesman Jamie Zwilling said that two units received extensive damage. One-third of the building had smoke damage.

The fire was under control in 30 minutes.

The fire quickly escalated to five alarms, bring about 15 departments and more than 75 firefighters.

“It reached five alarms because of the excess heat,” said Zwilling. About the time of the fire, the mercury hit reached 102 degrees.

A Golden Valley firefighter was transported to the hospital suffering from heat-related injuries, according to Zwilling.

Hennepin EMS Spokesman Christopher Kummer said they dispatched three ambulances and three supervisors to assist evaluate residents and monitor firefighters.

The following departments responded: Bloomington, Brooklyn Center, Brooklyn Park, Eden Prairie, Edina, Golden Valley, Hopkins, MAC Fire, Minneapolis, Minnetonka, Plymouth, Richfield, Robbindale and Wayzata.

Fire Consumes Bloomington Garage

May 25 – Fire destroyed a large garage in Bloomington last week.

The call was received at 9:30 p.m. for a garage fire at West 110th Street and Johnson Avenue South.

Engine 2 was first to arrive and found heavy fire showing from the four-stall garage. Firefighters deployed a pre-connected 1 3/4-inch hoseline and protected a home on the B-side that was in close proximity.

“The fire was well advanced upon our arrival and all operations were conducted from the exterior of the garage due to the failure of the roof, ” Assistant Fire Chief Jay Forster told Twin Cities Fire Wire.

The crew from Engine 5 supplied Engine 2 with water and stretched a second hoseline to attack the fire.

Chief 2 assumed command and assigned Chief 5 to Division C and Chief 3 as the Safety Officer.

“Due to all the contents in the garage it was quite labor intensive getting the fire out,” Forster said. “We ended up using a good amount of class A foam.”

As the fire was knocked down, crews from additional units were assigned to clear debris from the garage and overhaul.

One firefighter suffered a minor eye injury and the homeowner was treated for a hand injury.

The garage was a total loss and the cause of the fire is under investigation.

  • Assignment: Engines 2, 4 and 5, Ladders 2, 4 and 5, Chiefs 2, 3 and 5

Bloomington Crews Douse Kitchen Fire

May 6 – Bloomington firefighters quickly contained a kitchen fire early Friday morning.

Crews were called to a house fire at 9725 Oakland Ave. at 2:46 a.m.

Chief 4 arrived to find smoke showing from the one-story rambler and declared a working fire. All resident had safely escaped the fire.

The crew from Engine 1 deployed a 1 3/4-inch pre-connect and quickly contained the fire to the kitchen.

Ladders 1 and 3 conducted primary searches and checked for extension. Ladder 3 was also tasked with ventilation of the home.

Assistant Chief Jay Forster said the fire was under control in less than 10 minutes. Engine 2, Ladder 2 and Chief 2 were cancelled before they arrived on scene.

The Red Cross was called to assist the occupants and Bloomington fire crews returned to service within an hour.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

  • Assignment: Engines 1, 2 and 3, Ladders 1, 2 and 3 and Chiefs 1, 2, 4 and 7

Crews Find Hole in Floor While Battling Richfield House Fire

April 30 – Richfield firefighters found a large hole in the floor as they searched for the seat of the fire at a house fire late on Saturday night.

At 11:44 p.m. crews were dispatched to a 9-1-1 call reporting smoke from a building in the 6500 block of Portland Ave. S. Firefighters from Richfield, with automatic aid from Bloomington, the Metropolitan Airports Commission and Minneapolis were placed on the assignment.

Richfield Quint 1 and Rescue 1 arrived to heavy smoke from the second floor and chimney of the 1 1/2-story home. The home was unoccupied at the time.

Quint 1 assumed command and assigned Rescue 1’s crew to an interior attack from the A-side of the home. Richfield Engine 2 laid a supply line to Quint 1 and pulled a backup hoseline.

Rescue 1’s crew made entry. “Approximately five feet into the structure, they found a six-foot by six-foot hole in the living room floor,” according to Assistant Chief Wayne Kewitsch. The found danger was relayed to all units on the scene.

“Had they gone in gangbusters, they would have fallen through the floor and we would be discussing injured firefighters, not just a house fire,” Kewitsch old Twin Cities Fire Wire.

Minneapolis Chief 2 was assigned to the interior Minneapolis Engine 12 was assigned to primary searches of the first and second floors. Minneapolis Ladder 5 was assigned to search the basement.

MAC Engine 32 Richfield Engine 2 took the backup hoseline to the basement of the home.

Bloomington Chief 4 was assigned as safety officer. Bloomington Chief 7 established the on-deck group. Bloomington Ladder 3 was assigned to perform the secondary searches of the entire structure.

Minneapolis Ladder 5 and Bloomington Engine 1 teamed up to check for extension. Kewitsch said the crews performed extensive overhaul of the basement ceiling.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

  • Assignment: Richfield Quint 1, Engine 2, Rescue 1 and Chiefs 1 and 2. Auto-aid: Bloomington Engine 1, Ladder 3 and Chiefs 4 and 7, MAC Engine 32, Minneapolis Engine 12, Ladder 5 and Chief 2, Hennepin EMS

Edina Fire Chief Talks About Operations at Fatal House Fire

April 19, 2011 Leave a comment

April 18 – Edina Fire Chief Marty Scheerer talked with Twin Cities Fire Wire today about Monday morning’s house fire that claimed the life of a 54-year-old woman.

“It was a routine fire, except for the tragic loss of the resident,” Scheerer said.

Edina fire crews were called to 5300 block of Oaklawn Avenue at 4:47 a.m.

A police officer, who is also a paid-on-call firefighter in Edina arrived moments before firefighters and performed a quick size-up of the home. He found heavy smoke from throughout the from the 1 1/2-story home and flames showing from the A/B-corner in the basement.0

As Edina Engine 83 arrived, residents informed responders that three people occupy the home and were home. In rapid succession, the second and third alarms were called.

Engine 83’s crews stretched a handline in the front door as Richfield Engine 1 laid a supply line to Engine 83.

“As firefighters made their way in the front door, they found the victim and removed her to an ambulance.”

As crews made their way inside the structure, they encountered an area where the floor burned through. They retreated and gained entry through an egress window in the basement on the D-side of the home.

“We wanted to get a hold on the fire,” Scheerer said. “We had found the one victim and because of the time of the day, we wanted to try to find the other two who were supposed to be home.”

Firefighters made a push into the basement and contained the fire to the basement area.

As crews performed primary and secondary searches of the home, they found that the fire burned through the floor in two rooms. Scheerer estimates a hole about two feet in diameter burned through the living room floor in the front of the home.
A second hole, about six feet in diameter, burned through the kitchen on the B/C-corner of the home.

The fire was declared under control in about 30 minutes, but crews had extensive overhaul work to do. The flames burned through the exterior walls on the A/B-corner of the home and crews had to tear through lathe and plaster to stop the spread eof fire.

Firefighters from Bloomington, Eden Prairie, Hopkins, Richfield and St. Louis Park responded to the fire, along with Hennepin EMS. The Minnesota State Fire Marshal’s Office was called into to assist with the investigation of the fire.

Scheerer said that the department recently brought on a fire chaplain. “He handled the situation really well,” Scheerer said of the chaplain’s interactions with the victim’s family.

“He was spectacular and really helped the family and assisted us in dealing with the tragic situation at hand.”

Related:

Woman Dies in Edina House Fire

April 18, 2011 1 comment

April 18 – One woman died in an early-morning house fire in Edina Monday.

Firefighters were called to 5300 block of Oaklawn Avenue around 5 a.m.

“Crews arrived within minutes to discover heavy smoke and flames from the north side of the home,” KSTP-TV reported.

The fire reached three alarms, bringing firefighters from Blooomington, Eden Prarie and Richfield to the scene for assistance.

KARE-TV reported that the fire was likely burning for over an hour before firefighter’s were called to the scene.

Four firefighters were treated at the scene for minor injuries, Hennepin EMS spokesman Christopher Kummer told Twin Cities Fire Wire.

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Fire Officials Talk About Minneapolis Gas Explosion Response

March 17, 2011 Leave a comment

We want to update you on the actions of area firefighters after today’s explosion and fire in South Minneapolis.

Both Minneapolis and Richfield were called for a reported house explosion and fire at 62nd Street and Nicollet around 8:36 a.m. This KMSP-TV video shows the explosion.

As firefighters were enroute, it was determined that the incident was in Minneapolis, so Richfield Quint 1, Rescue 1 and Chief 1 continued to the scene based on their auto agreement.

Arriving Minneapolis firefighter cordoned off the area. “We began evacuating bystanders and residents,” Assistant Chief Cherie Penn said. A second alarm was called.

The 20-inch natural gas line was sending flames in excess of 100 feet into the air.

The initial perimeter was Portland to Harriet Avenues (East to West) and 54th Street to the Crosstown (North to South.)

In Minneapolis, Richfield Chief 1 assisted with the evacuation of the Cub Food store across the street from the explosion while Quint 1 helped residents along Nicollet Avenue evacuate their homes, according to Richfield Assistant Chief Wayne Kewitsch.

As manhole covers continued to explode on the south side of the incident, Kewitsch said they expanded the evacuations.

Richfield Chief 2, in coordination with the Richfield police, started evacuating to 66th Street. That area contained a number of residential structures and commercial businesses. Crews from Bloomington, Edina and Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC) were called to assist on the Richfield side of the incident.

Penn said that the highest gas readings were found to be 80 parts per million.

As the gas was shut off, Penn said that Minneapolis reduced the number of resources on scene. The flames dissipated by 10:30 a.m.

Several vehicles near the fire were damaged and the sign on Cub Food melted from the intense heat.

By 11:05 a.m., residents were being allowed back in their homes surrounding the blast site.

“After being on scene for a little over two hours, only one fire crew was left on scene to assist Centerpoint Energy.”

“Even though I’m in Maryland at the National Fire Academy, I have been in close contact with command staff in Minneapolis as the incident unfolded this morning,” Minneapolis Fire Chief Alex Jackson said in a press release. He was attending an emergency operations training session, with other city staff members.

  • Assignment for Richfield Operations: Richfield Engine 2, Chief 2; Bloomington Engines 1 and 3, Ladder 3 and Chief 1; Edina Engine 81 and Chief 3; MAC Engine 31 and Chiefs 2 and 3

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