Home, other structures spared by St. George Fire Department after shop catches fire

ST. GEORGE — A battalion of fire engines and patrol vehicles responded to a mobile home park off of Industrial Road on Tuesday morning after a structure fire was reported in a work shed.

The St. George Fire Department sends multiple engines to a structure fire at a mobile home park near Industrial Road in St. George, Utah, Nov. 14, 2023 | Photo by Cody Blowers, St. George News

St. George Fire Chief Robert Stoker told St. George News they were paged just after 7:30 a.m. to a structure fire reported at the mobile home park on 740 North just off of Industrial Road. Crews arrived to find smoke billowing from a shop located in a detached garage on one of the homes with flames visible near the roof area.

The occupants inside of the home evacuated safely and were outside when the first engines arrived on scene.

Crews attacked the fire from the outside and then breached the structure. The flames had extended through the roof of the shop and was also starting to spread towards the yard, where debris and storage materials were scattered across the area.

Crews also worked to keep the blaze from spreading from the garage to the primary residence, with ground crews battling the flames on the ground and from the roof of the structure.

Firefighters battled the blaze that continued to burn in the confined area for nearly an hour. Once the active flames were extinguished, firefighters then turned their attention to checking other parts of the structure and removed any materials still smoldering.

“Crews were able to contain it to the structure of origin so it didn’t get into the home itself,” Stoker said.

One of the neighbors told St. George News that a man was working in the shop earlier that same morning, as he was known to do on many mornings, adding that the shop also had a fireplace.

Stoker said that information obtained at the scene indicated that a man, who lived Washington City, was known to do wood working projects in the detached garage that served as a makeshift shop on a fairly regular basis. However, the cause of the fire is still unknown, the chief said, since the investigation is still ongoing.

The shop fire required a large response to get the blaze contained quickly, since these fires tend to spread more rapidly due to the confined space and light construction, he said, while the structure itself intensifies the heat and smoke buildup which can spread very quickly to the other structures.

What made Tuesday’s fire even more challenging, Stoker said, was the confined space in which crews were working that was hampered even further by the amount of storage and other items, making access to the fire even more difficult.

Firefighters fighting a blaze reported at a mobile home park near Industrial Road in St. George, Utah, Nov. 14, 2023 | Photo by Chris Reed, St. George News

He went on to say that keeping yards and outbuildings clear of debris and making sure there is a walkway or path to exit a home or property safely can mean all of the difference when it comes to mitigating the hazards and damage associated with these types of fires.

It also assists firefighters by providing unobstructed access to any needed areas quickly, which can reduce the amount of damage and risk to other structures by stopping the spread of the blaze.

With so many resources engaged at the mobile home fire, Santa Clara-Ivins Fire and Rescue offered to cover any calls that came in from the St. George area until crews and equipment could be released from the scene — assistance that was very much appreciated, Stoker said.

The cause of the blaze is still under investigation and no injuries were reported at the scene.

The St. George Fire Department responded with more than a dozen engines, trucks and a squad truck, while the St. George Police Department dispatched several patrol units to contain the scene. Gold Cross Ambulance sent an ambulance and a supervisor on standby in the event they were needed.

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

St. George News reporter Chris Reed contributed to this report.

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Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2023, all rights reserved.

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