Late Sunday, November 27th, a four-alarm fire destroyed a marina warehouse. The fire started around 8:45 p.m. and quickly grew. Fire crews responded at 9 p.m. to find heavy fire at the front of the building. Evacuation of nearby residents took place shortly after rating the fire as a four alarm, bringing in extra equipment and workforce to control the blaze.
The wind hastened the speed of the fire, which shifted direction and moved through the warehouse. Firefighters went into a “defensive mode” dumping water on the blaze from a safe distance. Four aerial fire trucks, supplied by water from hydrants and a fire boat on the river, helped contain the fire.
A nearby boutique hotel was evacuated because of the amount of smoke in the air. Residents said they heard loud explosions from the burning warehouse, which the Fire Chief said were propane tanks. Chemicals, fuel, and propane tanks inside the building contributed to the size of the fire.
An adjacent home also was severely damaged and is now uninhabitable. Three boats in the harbor were destroyed. A total of 158 homes and businesses lost power after the fire and many outages remained thereafter.
The state’s Fire and Explosion Investigation Unit are helping with the investigation into the cause of the fire. The site was busy with activity the following day with firefighters extinguishing hot spots, investigators digging through debris and crews replacing burned utility poles as part of the effort to restore power to the homes and businesses in the immediate area.
Asbestos was detected in the vicinity of the fire. Contractors hired by the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) used a large vacuum on adjacent properties, sucking up debris spread by the fire that could contain asbestos. Neighbors were notified that contractors in protective suits would need access to their properties to manually remove the debris. The contractors also removed any oil that remained in fuel tanks on the site of the fire.
Routine inspections of fire hazards and fire protection systems can minimize threats to businesses. Risk Logic engineers perform property loss prevention surveys and provide standardized recommendations that keep your business and building safe. Risk Logic can inspect your facility and provide an assessment to prevent losses like this from occurring. Contact Risk Logic for a full inspection.