Combustible Items Left On Stovetop Cause Lincolnia House Fire

On Friday, August 4, at approximately 8:14 a.m., units from Fairfax County Fire and Rescue and Arlington County Fire Department were dispatched for a reported house fire in the 3900 block of Fairfax Parkway in the Lincolnia section of Fairfax County.

Units arrived on scene to find smoke showing from the front of a one-story, single family home. Firefighters quickly located and extinguished a fire in the kitchen area of the home.

The fire was discovered by an occupant of the home when she was awakened by the smell of smoke. One smoke alarm was located in the basement but it did not have a battery installed. All occupants evacuated prior to fire department arrival. One of the adults suffered a minor injury after leaving the house. He was treated on scene and was not transported to a medical facility. No other civilian or firefighter injuries were reported.

 Fire Investigators determined that the fire was accidental in nature and originated in the kitchen. The cause of the fire was lightweight combustible items left on a stovetop. The day before the fire, the stovetop had been in use when the house lost electricity due to a storm. The burner was not turned off before the occupants of the home went to sleep. Electricity was restored while the occupants were asleep and the burner began heating the combustible materials.

Two adults and two children were displaced as a result of the fire. Red Cross assistance was requested and accepted.

Damages as a result of the fire were estimated at approximately $62,500.

Training Does Not Take The Weekend Off

By: Master Technician John Wehr
Fire Station 11, Penn Daw, C-Shift

A beautiful non-July like day this past weekend saw the personnel from Fire Station 11, Penn Daw, conduct outdoor training exercises. Station 11 units took advantage of a recently closed grocery store to go over a variety of fire scenarios that may occur in a strip type shopping center.

Many facets of fire ground operations were discussed and practiced. Crews performed various engine company operations, ladder truck placement, roof operations, forcible entry and search techniques.

Training doesn’t take the weekend off. Your Fairfax County fire and rescue personnel train everyday so they are prepared for any emergency 24 hours a day, seven days a week and 365 days a year.

A Beautiful Day For Roof Operations Training

By: Lieutenant Jon Stern
Fire Station 11, Penn Daw, B-Shift 

This week our station, Fire Station 11, Penn Daw, B-Shift conducted training on accessing a variety of commercial building roofs. Often times these roofs can be challenging due to an assortment of reasons. A big one, which you can see in the photos below, is some have a tall parapet wall that can be misleading when viewed from the ground. Once on top, you can see the big drop off below (approximately ten feet in this case) to the roof.

The training also serves a dual purpose of allowing our firefighters to familiarize themselves with the buildings in the area they may one day have to respond to during an emergency. For example, this particular building we trained on we now know there is a significant parapet wall and we will need to grab a small ladder to access the roof safely from the large ladder.

Knowledge gained by training before the emergency incident can save time, improve performance and potentially prevent unnecessary harm to those we serve and firefighters alike.

 

Plumbing Torch Ignites Annandale House Fire

House Fire

On Friday, July 7 at approximately 2:28 p.m., units from Fairfax County Fire and Rescue and the City of Fairfax Fire Department were dispatched for a reported house fire in the 3800 block of King Arthur Road in the Annandale section of Fairfax County.

Units from Fire Station 23, West Annandale, arrived on scene to find a three-story home with smoke showing from the roofline. Crews quickly deployed multiple lines of fire hose to confine and extinguish the fire which was concealed in the walls and attic space.

A sole occupant that was home was alerted to the fire when she smelled smoke. She safely evacuated and notified 9-1-1. The smoke alarms did not initially activate because of the location of the fire.

Fire Investigators determined that the fire originated within the void stud space on an exterior wall. The fire was determined to be accidental in nature, resulting from the use of a plumbing torch which ignited combustibles within the wall.

Two adults were displaced as a result of the fire. Red Cross assistance was offered but declined. There were no civilian or firefighter injuries. Damage to the house as a result of the fire is estimated to be approximately $60,000.

Radiant Heat From Burner Causes Fairfax House Fire

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On Sunday, June 11, at approximately 9:22 p.m., units from Fairfax County Fire and Rescue and the City of Fairfax Fire Department were dispatched for a reported house fire in the 10400 block of Finchley Court in the Fairfax area of Fairfax County.

Units arrived on scene and reported light smoke showing from the front door of a two-story, single family home. Firefighters entered the home and discovered that the fire was already out. The fire was isolated to the kitchen area.

The fire was discovered by the occupants of the home when they returned from a family outing. All occupants were safely outside when firefighters arrived. Smoke alarms were present in the home but it is undetermined if they activated.

Fire Investigators determined that the fire started in the kitchen. The cause of the fire was accidental in nature and was the result of radiant heat, from a range burner left on, igniting combustible materials close by.

Red Cross is assisting the two adults and four children displaced as a result of the fire. No civilian or firefighter injuries were reported. Damages as a result of the fire are estimated to be approximately $62,500.

 

 

Unattended Cooking Causes Sully Station Apartment Fire

On Wednesday, June 7, at approximately 7:28 p.m., units from Fairfax County Fire and Rescue and the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority Fire and Rescue Department (Dulles Airport) were dispatched for a reported garden apartment fire in the 5100 block of Woodmere Drive in the Sully Station area of Fairfax County.Unattended Cooking Causes Sully Station Apartment Fire

Units arrived on scene to find heavy smoke showing from the hallway of a three-story garden apartment building. Firefighters quickly determined the location of the smoke and entered the apartment to find fire in the kitchen area. The fire was quickly contained and then extinguished. There was no fire extension to any other apartment units.

Two occupants reside in the apartment but were not home at the time of the fire. The fire was reported by the adult occupant when she returned home and discovered smoke upon attempting to enter her apartment. There was one smoke alarm in the apartment and unknown if it activated.

Fire Investigators determined that the fire started in the kitchen of the apartment. The fire is accidental in nature and was caused by an unattended pan of oil left on the heating element of the stove-top.

There were no reported civilian or fire fighter injuries. Red Cross assistance was utilized for one adult and one child displaced by the fire. Damages as a result of the fire were estimated to be approximately $93,750.

Fairfax County Fire and Rescue would also like to remind all residents about cooking safely. Please remember to “Watch What You Heat!

Kitchen Safety Tips

◾Have a “kid-free zone” of at least three feet around the stove and areas where hot food or drink is prepared or carried.

◾Wear short or tight fitting sleeves when cooking. Long loose sleeves are more likely to catch on fire or get caught on pot handles.

◾Keep things that can catch fire such as dish towels, curtains, or paper, at least three feet away from the stove.

◾Do not leave cooking food unattended. If you leave the kitchen, even for a short time, turn off the stove.

◾Turn pot handles inward, facing the wall to prevent burns caused by overturning or spills.

◾Pot holders or oven mitts prevent burns when handling hot dishes.

◾Regularly clean your cooking equipment so that there are no cooking materials, food items or grease accumulation.

◾Always keep an oven mitt and lid nearby when you are cooking. If a small grease fire starts in a pan, put on an oven mitt and smother the flames by carefully sliding the lid over the pan. Turn off the burner. Do not remove the lid until it is completely cool.

◾If there is an oven fire, turn off the heat and keep the door closed to prevent flames from burning you and your clothing. Have the oven serviced before you use it again.