Kitchener Ontario fire dispatch received a call for a basement fire at 603 Mill Park Drive at 1:40 February 15, 2019. P6, P1, A1, R1, and Car 23 were dispatched to the call. P6 arrived on scene and reported they had smoke showing and a 360 showed they had a fire in the basement. Command reported all five students in the basement were out of the house and that the owner of the house was out of town.
Station 7 was added to the call, they were running in the tanker for the shift. Multiple lines were pulled into the building. Crews encountered a very cluttered house, full of furniture on every floor and even the garage was full of furniture which prevented access as it was so full. There were three pianos in the bedrooms on the second floor and an organ in the living room which was not accessible due to all of the furniture.
Firefighters were pulled from the basement due to untenable conditions, and the first floor became well involved minutes later. It was not long before the entire building was alight. Two hydrants were picked up to feed the pumper and aerial. Small and large lines as well as an aerial master stream were used to fight the fire.
Due to the tremendous amount of furniture in the house, it took hours to knock the bulk of the fire down. The day shift replaced the tired crews, and worked till 12:30 to fully extinguish all the spot fires. Due to the severe damage in the house, all overhaul had to be done from outside. Crews even pulled a cellar piercing applicator to use on hot spots. That is the first time I have seen this tool used in 31 years on the canteen. Damage has been set at $800,000, cause has not been determined yet. Box 690 provided breakfast and lunch at the fire. Photos and videos shot 35 minutes into the fire.
Gary Dinkel, Box 690