Thursday, July 15, 2010
Firemen go to back-to-back blazes
By BARRY BURLESON
Firefighters found themselves battling back-to-back blazes just three miles apart in the early morning hours Thursday.
Both were unoccupied, wood-frame houses on Highway 349 South – the first fire reported at 2 a.m. and the next at 3:30 a.m.
“It’s odd, having two like that back-to-back and that close together,” said David Cook, new fire chief at Potts Camp/Bethlehem.
Potts Camp received mutual aid from Holly Springs, Waterford and Hickory Flat.
They first responded to a house about three miles from Potts Camp. It was fully engulfed in flames when firemen arrived.
“There was no way to do anything about it,” said Kenny Holbrook, fire chief at Holly Springs. “It burned to the ground.”
Cook left that scene, driving the truck back toward Bethlehem to the station. That’s when he saw another structure on fire about three miles south of the other one.
“I wheeled in and went at it,” Cook said. “I was a one-man show for a few minutes.”
Then he was quickly joined by fellow firefighters.
“They handled it well before we got there,” Holbrook said. “It was a really good stop. The fire was pretty much contained to the two rooms – the back porch and the utility room had the main damage. There is still a roof over 90 percent of the house.”
Tracy Jeffries, county fire investigator, said the fires appear to be accidental – just a coincidence – but they are under investigation.
Jeffries also said a double-wide mobile home on Hernando Road was a total loss in a blaze about 10 p.m. Tuesday, July 6. No one was at home at the time.
Red Banks received mutual aid from Holly Springs and Victoria.
The cause is undetermined and it, too, is under investigation.
“The fire was coming out of the roof when I got there,” Jeffries said.
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