Police, Fire, Courts

March 16, 2013

Tupper Lake couple loses longtime home to fire

TUPPER LAKE — An electrical fire in Gene Flagg’s garage spread to his parents’ house early Friday.

Glenn and Theresa Flagg were home at the time.

“They were evacuated safely,” Tupper Lake Fire Chief Mark Picerno said. “When we arrived, the garage was fully involved and the back of the house was on fire.”

The hot inferno shot bright flames against the night sky and lit up Demars Boulevard for several blocks.

“It was in my garage, and then the wind blew the flames right over to my parent’s house,” Gene told the Press-Republican.

He said his father and mother were doing okay.


No firefighters were injured battling the blaze, even though water from the fire hoses froze quickly in the 3-degree air temperatures, leaving the area slick with ice.

“Fire departments from Piercefield and Long Lake were called to the scene for mutual aid, and Saranac Lake stood by in our station,” Picerno said.

“We used six apparatus with 45 personnel. Nobody got hurt, though it was icy.”

The fire departments were able to battle the blaze using the village hydrant system.

The emergency was paged out at 11:30 p.m., and at 7:30 a.m., Tupper Lake firefighters were still getting the trucks and equipment back in service.

“It was about six hours of fighting fire, hitting hot spots to make sure it didn’t rekindle,” Picerno said.

But the crews worked well together.

“It was an excellent turnout. We can’t thank our mutual-aid companies enough and the Tupper Lake Ladies Auxiliary who came and brought us coffee and sandwiches.”

The Save A Lot grocery store on Demars Boulevard also opened at 2:30 a.m. to help provide firefighters with provisions.

Tupper Lake Police helped secure the site as crews fought back the blaze.


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