Press-Republican

October 3, 2013

Assistant Fire Chief: Fire caused by electrical malfunction

By FELICIA KRIEG
Press-Republican

---- — TICONDEROGA — An electrical malfunction appears to be the cause of a mobile home fire Tuesday night that left a large family homeless.

The Ticonderoga Volunteer Fire Department was dispatched to 45 Burgoyne Road at about 10 p.m. and initial information placed two people inside the home, Watts said.

Wednesday, a notification from the American Red Cross said two adults and five children had lived there.

The response time was quicker than usual, Watts said, as some firefighters were already at the station for training classes.

One occupant sustained minor smoke inhalation but didn’t require hospital treatment, said Ticonderoga Fire Department First Assistant Fire Chief Matt Watts.

’LOTS OF BLACK SMOKE’

”There was a lot of black smoke coming out of the house” when firefighters arrived, he said.

A man who had been trying to extinguish the fire in the double-wide mobile home had been ushered outside by Ticonderoga Police.

”They did a really good job getting in there and getting him out safely,” Watts said of the police officers.

Another man had exited the structure without help, he said.

Watts saw pets outside the home when he arrived; none were hurt, he said.

A water pipe burst as a result of the fire, and the Ticonderoga Water Department was called to shut off the water, Watts said.

National Grid turned off electricity to the home, he said.

The Ticonderoga Emergency Squad responded, as is customary with structure fires in the town, he said.

’SMOKE DAMAGE THROUGHOUT’

”There’s smoke damage throughout the house,” the assistant fire chief said.

But structural damage was confined to the bathroom where the fire started, Watts said.

A monetary estimate of the damage was not available Wednesday.

Laura Fuller owns the mobile home, Watts said, he thought the family living there may be related to her. Wednesday, he didn’t know what their names were.

NO RENTER’S INSURANCE

The tenants did not have insurance, Watts said.

”It’s a really good idea to have renter’s insurance,” he advised, adding that policies are generally inexpensive.

He said the department has responded to multiple fires this year where those affected did not have renter’s insurance.

”They lose everything.”

Many renters don’t realize that homeowner’s insurance does not protect their property, Watts said.

”They (the homeowner) can’t insure something they don’t own.”

Watts said occupants were receiving Red Cross assistance and stayed with relatives Tuesday night.

The Ticonderoga Fire Department, which had 35 firefighters at the blaze, was back in service at about 11 p.m.

Email Felicia Krieg: fkrieg@pressrepublican.comTwitter: @FeliciaKrieg