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Several departments respond to Columbia fire

February 18, 2011 Local News No Comments
Bolton Fire Chief James Preuss breaks up a portion of the roof. Photo: Al Malpa

Bolton Fire Chief James Preuss breaks up a portion of the roof. Photo: Al Malpa

Multiple fire depart­ments from surrounding towns pitched in to extinguish a house fire at 79 Erdoni Road Thursday afternoon (Feb. 17).

Those responding included the Co­lumbia Volunteer Fire Department, Hebron Fire Department, Bolton Fire Department, Andover Fire Department and the Willimantic Fire Department.

Others providing assistance included the Coventry Volunteer Fire Association with an ambulance, Lebanon Volunteer Fire Department providing a tanker truck, Mansfield Fire Department pro­viding a rapid intervention team (to assist firefighters in distress, if needed), and the North Windham Fire Department covering Columbia’s fire station, while Colchester provided an ambulance to cover Columbia’s station.

Firemen prepare their oxygen tanks to battle a house fire on Erdoni Road in Columbia Thursday afternoon. Photo: Al Malpa

Firemen prepare their oxygen tanks to battle a house fire on Erdoni Road in Columbia Thursday afternoon. Photo: Al Malpa

Firefighters were called to the scene around 2:20 p.m. Thursday, with the report of a structure fire. No injuries were reported.

Columbia Fire Chief Peter Starkel said upon arrival there was “real heavy fire conditions” and that the rear of the residence was “fully involved.”

He indicated the blaze started in the rear of the residence and had started to spread to the rest of the house – first and second floors.

Starkel said there was one resident home during the time of the fire, but she evacuated the residence upon discover­ing the fire.

“She did the right thing,” he said.

Starkel said two residents live at the house and were making alternative liv­ing arrangements Thursday.

“We made sure they had arrange­ments,” Starkel said, adding that the two were able to find a place to stay.

According to town records, the property is owned by John and Joanne Lowney.

A message seeking comment on the fire and cause was left for Columbia Fire Marshal Leslie Kittle.

Firefighters spray water on the home. Photo: Al Malpa

Firefighters spray water on the home. Photo: Al Malpa

“Everything went extremely well,” Starkel said, adding that firefighters in the department are “pretty aggressive” in attacking the fire. “They always do a great job.”

Starkel also discussed the num­ber of fire departments on scene. “We all work very well together,” he said.

He added that firefighters cleared the scene around 7 p.m.

Posted 2-18-2011

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