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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.

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Women’s Fire Service Expo to Aid in Twin Cities Recruiting Efforts

 North Star Women's Firefighter Association, Eden Prairie, Female Firefighter

Courtesy North Star Women's Firefighter Association

May 13 – The North Star Women’s Firefighter Association is preparing for their sixth annual Women’s Fire Service Expo that takes place on May 21. The event features a unique opportunity to recruit female firefighters for department’s in the metro.

Twin Cities Fire Wire spoke with NSWFA President Kimberly Cummings and she’s excited for the event. Cummings has been a career firefighter in Eden Prairie for 10 years.

The event is used as a recruiting tool, Cummings said. “It’s a chance for them to get hands-on with firefighting and see if it’s for them.”

The attendees are given an introduction to firefighting equipment and then suited up in a full protective ensemble. They go through live fire evolutions, extrication scenarios and have the chance to go though a physical agility test.

“They can come away from the day and say ‘I can do this’ or they can leave saying ‘this isn’t really for me,” Cummings said. “We’d rather have them know ahead of time if it’s for them.”

The idea for the annual expo came up when area department saw they were falling short in their recruitment efforts. “We were doing the typical recruiting efforts with flyers and meetings, but it wasn’t working.

Cummings said that many would attend the a general information session at their local fire department, but most would not return. This is just one opportunity for them to “get beyond the meeting enviroment and learn more about what firefighter really is.”

Since the first event six years ago, Eden Prairie has gone from three female firefighters to 10. The association doesn’t have any solid numbers on how many expo attendees have joined their local agencies as a result, but she feels that it’s made a certain impact on some woman.

The expo takes place at the South Metro Public Safety Training Facility in Edina from 7:30 – 12:30 on May 21.

She encourage departments in the Twin Cities metro to inform any potential candidates about the event and invite them to attend. The event is free, but attendees need to pre-register for the expo.

The North Star Women’s Firefighter Association has about 50 active members. Cummings said the group is focused on building mentors and networking among peers.

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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Update: Edina House Fire Turns Fatal

December 14, 2010 Leave a comment

This morning’s house fire in Edina has claimed the life of a 74-year-old woman.

The woman’s 75-year-old husband was able to escape from the fire by jumping from a second floor window onto the garage roof, according to KSTP.

Crews were called out to the 7200 block of Lanham Lane about 12:30 a.m. and found heavy smoke showing from the 2 1/2-story dwelling.

Video shot by KSTP crews shows heavy smoke pushing from both floors of the dwelling and firefighters using handlines on heavy fire conditions right inside the front entryway. Another crews is forcing entry into the garage.

The fire burned through the roof on the D-side of the home.

KSTP reports that crews worked for several hours to locate the missing woman.

Mutual aid was received from Bloomington, Eden Prairie, Richfield and St. Louis Park.

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