Niagara Gazette

July 20, 2013

FIRE CALLS: Niagara Falls fire reports published July 20

Staff Reports
Niagara Gazette

Fire Calls

For the period of July 1 to 14, the Niagara Falls Fire Department responded to 278 calls. The total number of service calls for 2013 to date is 3,425.

• FIRE: On July 2, Engine 3 and Truck 1 were sent, at 8:09 a.m., to a report of a vehicle fire in a secluded alley in the 1700 block of North Avenue. Upon arrival, firefighters found a 2005 Chrysler mini-van fully involved in fire. After putting the fire out, it was determined that this was intentionally set. An interview with the owner of the vehicle, who lived a short distance away, revealed that she did not realize the van was missing. Damage was estimated at $5,000 and the case remains under investigation.

• RESCUE: On July 4, the crew from Truck 2, consisting of Captain Frank Eugeni and Firefighters John Pati, and Joe Dimino responded, at 2:03 a.m., to a hotel in the 7000 block of Buffalo Avenue for a report of people trapped in a stalled elevator. Using their keys and tools, they were able to safely remove the occupants in less than five minutes.

• FIRE: On July 6, a full assignment from Platoon 1 was dispatched, at 2:25 a.m., to a garage fire in the 1900 block of Mackenna Avenue. The rear of the garage was heavily involved in fire and after extinguishing the blaze, damage to structure and contents was pegged at $12,000. The cause could not be immediately determined and it remains under investigation. 

• RESCUE: On July 6, Falls firefighters assisted New York State Park Police in searches for persons reported to be in the swift water of the Niagara River. Unfortunately, despite everyone's best efforts, two people were later found to have perished. 

• FIRE: On July 12, a 1999 Nissan was discovered, at 2:19 a.m., on fire in a driveway in the 1300 block of Fort Avenue. Engine 4 and Truck 1 rapidly put out the fire, but due to the age and high mileage of the car, it was declared a total loss. The fire appears to an arson and remains under investigation.

• ACCIDENT: On July 12, Platoon 1 responded, at 7:39 a.m., to the 9400 block of Niagara Falls Boulevard for a call of a school bus that had crashed into a building. Crews were able to safely extricate the driver who, due to a medical condition, had passed out and lost control of the bus. An aide on the bus was also injured, as was a person in the building. No children were on the bus. All three injured parties were taken to local hospitals.

• FIRE: On July 14, Platoon 2 was called, at 1:22 a.m., to a structure fire in the 1900 block of Falls Street. The crew of Engine 4, consisting of Capt. Frank Guthrie and firefighters Chris Bodenstein, Tom Cutler and Adam Farinas, stretched a hose line to a rear stairwell and advanced it to a second floor room that was under heavy fire conditions. The fire was knocked down quickly by the crew, aided by ventilation methods provided by other firefighters. The cause of the blaze was an overloaded and frayed extension cord underneath a pile of clothes. Damage was estimated at $15,000. Three residents of the home were assisted by the Red Cross. 

• FIRE: On July 14, as firefighters were finishing packing up from the Falls Street blaze, they were summoned to the 1100 block of Whitney Avenue for another house fire. This fire was found to be intentionally set in a vacant house. It was rapidly doused by the crew of Engine 3, consisting of Capt. Mike Winker and Firefighters Anthony Ross, Tim Kennedy and Joel Stephenson. Damage was set at $5,000.