Moderate fire danger in the high country enable local departments to lend a hand with Black Forest Fire
By Bob Berwyn
SUMMIT COUNTY — With only a moderate potential for wildfires in Summit County, local firefighters have been sent to the Front Range to help fight the destructive Black Forest Fire. The assignment could last as long as two weeks, according to a press release from Lake Dillon Fire-Rescue.
The fire northeast of Colorado Springs has already destroyed about 80 to 100 homes and forced the evacuation of several thousand residents, and more homes are still at risk.
FRISCO — A distinctive Montezuma resident sometimes known as the “Tiltin’ Hilton” was destroyed by fire Tuesday afternoon, according to a release from Lake Dillon Fire-Rescue.
The A-frame house with the distinctive off-kilter three-story addition was a total loss, but fortunately there were no injuries. More than 20 firefighters from Lake Dillon Fire-Rescue and Red, White & Blue Fire were called to the blaze about 1:30 p.m. The first crew on scene at 1:47 p.m. was met outside by one of the residents, who reported that no one was in the building. Continue reading “Colorado: Fire destroys Summit County home”→
Emergency officials recommend appliance inspections along with CO detectors
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — Summit County emergency officials say the recent spell of cold weather triggered a rash of carbon-monoxide alarms, showing the value of installing carbon-monoxide detectors.
Lake Dillon firefighters have been called to several alarms in recent weeks, reinforcing the notion that CO detectors serve a valuable function in alerting residents about the dangerous buildup of carbon monoxide in their homes, especially in winter, when stoves, furnaces and fireplaces that burn combustible materials such as natural gas, propane, wood, pellets and coal are in use. Continue reading “Colorado: Carbon-monoxide alarms spike during cold snap”→
Dry lighting still triggering small fires on Colorado Western Slope
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — Firefighters have been able to contain a number of lightning-caused wildfires on the Western Slope of Colorado, including the Wrigley Fire and the Long Mesa Fire, burning in the BLM’s Black Canyon Wilderness area.
Elsewhere on the Western Slope, crews are still responding to reports of smoke and smaller fires, scattered primarily over the west and central zones, as thunderstorms continue to spark small blazes in dry fuel.
Suppression work on the Long Mesa Fire advanced using ground crews and helicopter assistance for logistics and some “bucket drops” of water. Better visibility and more accurate mapping capabilities reduced the affected area for this fire to 150 acres. Three crews continue to work on the fire in rough, rugged and remote terrain. Continue reading “Summit County crews assigned to regional fires”→
Quick thinking, smoke detectors and a well-placed garden hose help Mesa Cortina resident exinguish threatening blaze
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — A quick-thinking Mesa Cortina resident used a garden hose Tuesday to extinguish a kitchen fire that threatened to destroy his home at 041 King’s Court.
Marcus Mathieu Mirazo said the beeping of a neighbor’s smoke detector woke him up Tuesday afternoon while he was napping between jobs. When he walked outside to investigate, he noticed smoke pouring from the upstairs eaves.
Mirazo quickly hooked up a garden hose and started spraying the flames that had started slipping out the cracking the kitchen window. He hauled the hose up an external stairway, broke up a door window with a rock and hosed down the rolling flames that by that time had nearly engulfed the small kitchen. Continue reading “Summit County resident saves home, dogs from fire”→
SUMMIT COUNTY — A close call Friday at at Keystone condo shows the importance of maintaining sprinkler systems, according to Lake Dillon Fire-Rescue spokesman Steve Lispher, who said firefighters responded to the morning call after a resident left a pot of oil on a hot burner a short distance beneath a microwave oven.
The oil generated enough heat to start the fire, which climbed up some adjacent cabinetry until a sprinkler head in the vaulted ceiling over the kitchen activated. The fire was kept in check by a fire-sprinkler system until firefighters from Lake Dillon Fire-Rescue arrived a short time later to extinguish the flames that smoldered beneath the overhanging kitchen fascia, which partially had shielded the fire from the sprinkler.
SUMMIT COUNTY — As winter’s snows pile up, the crews at Lake Dillon Fire-Rescue ask that high country residents and visitors alike help keep themselves and others safe with a few tips:
Adopt a hydrant. With a good snowpack already on the ground and more coming, fire hydrants often get partially or fully buried by plows. Help out the fire crews – and provide a nice community benefit – by digging out fire hydrants in your neighborhood or near your workplace. This can make a critical difference in saving a building. Send us a photo to firstname.lastname@example.org for our website of you clearing a hydrant, and we’ll give you an LDFR goodie package.
Install and test carbon-monoxide and smoke detectors. Although most homes now have smoke detectors, few residents remember to test them once a month to ensure that they are working properly. Likewise, carbon-monoxide detectors have been proven to save lives. Put in fresh batteries and check them regularly, particularly if you are using gas- or wood-burning appliances for heat.
Dig out gas meters and propane-tank valves. If snow piles up next to pipes and fittings, even tiny leaks can build up explosive concentrations and displace air enough to knock you out.
Slow down and back off. Some people will be surprised to know that the preponderance of our emergency calls are not for fires but for vehicle crashes. Every motorist knows – but it bears repeating – that roads in winter can be exceedingly slick, and markedly slower speeds and significantly greater stopping distances are required. Don’t tailgate; accelerate and decelerate smoothly and gradually; and avoid unpredictable moves. Also remember that what looks like a little water runoff on a sunny day actually can be black ice.