Firefighters tackle residential fire in Dammeron Valley – twice

Firefighters inside residence after structure fire reignites 30 hours later in Dammeron Valley , Washington County, Utah, Feb. 22, 2018 | Photo by Ron Chaffin, St. George News

WASHINGTON COUNTY — A structure fire at a residence in Dammeron Valley brought multiple agencies to a scene where active flames were seen shooting from the residence, a fire that reignited 30 hours later.

Firefighters respond to residence where structure fire reignites 30 hours later in Dammeron Valley, Washington County, Utah, Feb. 22, 2018 | Photo by Ron Chaffin, St. George News

Sometime after 10 p.m. Tuesday, firefighters were called to a structure fire reported at a residence on Homestead Drive. As crews arrived, flames could be seen coming from the single-story home, Dammeron Valley Fire Chief Kevin Dye said.

“There were active flames when we got there, and the homeowners evacuated the home right after calling 911 and were already outside with their pets when we arrived,” Dye said.

Firefighters entered the residence and began battling the blaze using water stored in the fire engine. When the second truck arrived, they were able to access water from the fire hydrant, while reinforcements were called in to provide mutual aid to crews on scene.

Meanwhile, firefighters from Diamond Valley Fire District and Northwest Fire District responded and by 1:45 a.m. the fire was under control, and two hours later the fire, was extinguished.

Distance from residence to fire hydrant used by firefighters when structure fire reignites, Washington County, Utah, Feb. 22, 2018 | Photo by Ron Chaffin, St. George News

The homeowners told fire personnel that they awakened to heavy smoke inside of the residence, and when they called 911 were told to evacuate the home immediately, which they did.

Dye and his deputy chief responded back to the residence Wednesday morning and spent the day helping the homeowners move their valuables, personal paperwork, photos, irreplaceable items and possessions out of the home to prepare the structure for fire damage repair.

On Thursday, firefighters were dispatched to the home after a call to 911 reported heavy smoke and flames coming from the residence for the second time. After several hours, firefighters were able to extinguish the fire and remained on scene to ensure there were no burning embers or hot spots.

“The home was very well built, with a significant amount of insulation material in the walls and attic, and insulating material that went so many places, and it was that material that reignited,” Dye said.

The chief went on to say that damage to the structure is not confined to fire damage, as water can cause extensive damage as well, he said, so fire crews were using enough water to put the fire out, but not so much as to destroy everything inside of the home.

Fortunately, the family’s possessions were already out of the residence when the fire flared up, or the losses could have been significantly greater, Dye said.

The investigation showed that the fire started in the wood-burning stove flue, then quickly spread through the attic, the chief said, and from there spread through the walls and continued burning through the dense insulation.

No injuries to civilians, firefighters or pets were reported.

Dammeron Valley Fire Department, Diamond Valley Fire District and Northwest Fire District responded and tended to the scene.

This report is based on statements from police or other emergency responders and may not contain the full scope of findings.

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