06/04/09 104 W, 2 I - + 10 - 13 This Afternoon's Major Fire / Anterbury Drive in Apex

Major fire at 118 Anterbury Drive in Apex. Dispatched 2:27 p.m. Apex, Holly Springs, Morrisville, Cary, Fairview fire departments reportedly on scene. Apex Ladder 1 and Ladder 3 deployed during defensive operations. Fire contained to one building with six townhomes, with three heavily damaged by fire. Two-story, wood-frame buildings built 2005, with approximately 8,600 square-feet. Flames also sparked a woods fire behind the building. Read the WTVD story, which includes a slideshow of aerial photos. Read the WRAL story, which includes viewer photos. What other agencies, or specific units were on scene?

WTVD photo

Ysmael Espinoza/WRAL photo

Lets talk about secondary means of egress and ground ladder placement on this photo. 1.) Is there secondary means of egress? Yes there are two ground ladders placed in side A of the this two story structure. 2. Is the ground ladder placement the correct way? I will let you guys answer that one! So what’s your answer?
FF - 06/04/09 - 18:38

Units on scene are Apex E2, E3, L1, L3, R3, BATT1, C1. Holly Springs E1, C4. Fairview E1, C1. Morrisville E1. Cary E5. Swift Creek E1 provided coverage at Apex.
4447 - 06/04/09 - 20:03

Were there any roof ops done ? IE: cutting a hole in the roof. Because What I have seen nothing of that was done the bucket put a stream onto the roof and blasted away shingles….a lot of good that does. IMO if need be cut and get off save a couple of houses.
TheOneandOnly - 06/04/09 - 20:43

Cary E6 not E5 and Battalion 1.
FF2 - 06/04/09 - 21:09

You sound like some Monday morning quarterbacks!!! I guess neither one of you were there and neither one of you can answer any of the questions asked by your own account. When people ask questions like these you can tell they do not have much experience!
firebugg (Email) - 06/04/09 - 22:54

Nothing more gets my goat than someone who is critical and Monday morning quarterbacks a fire and doesn’t leave their name…MAN UP already and stop hiding behind a generic screen name!!

My opinion, while ladders are thrown but maybe not at a window, I give the boys and girls from the “Peak of Good Living” credit for throwing them!! Look at some pics of other fires around the area and none are thrown!!

This all falls back on your departments directives for fireground operations. We can criticize every incident, and I’m critical of myself after every fire asking “what could/should I have done different”. While it’s easy to pick apart pictures, you weren’t there. This might not be the way you or I have decided to fight this one. But, I wasn’t there, so I’m not going to talk trash about why a ground ladder isn’t at a window. Atleast it’s up, which in this area, is a step in the right direction. How do we overcome this? Train, look how other “aggressive truck ops departments operate”, train some more, cruise the internet (youtube, vententersearch.com), and train some more!!!

One thing I will say; I’m not a fan of putting someone at the end of a stick to operate the ladder pipe. While it makes for great newspaper pictures, the only reason someone should be up there is if the controls from the pedestal/pump panel are out of service. It’s like putting a hot dog on the end of a stick…but who knows, the controls might not be functional, requiring someone to be up there.
Silver - 06/05/09 - 00:30

Also, look at your building construction. If I had to guess, lightweight truss. Probably had heavy fire showing from the roof, so consider the unstable twigs you’d be walking on. I can see trenching the roof further down, but you can also trench it from underneath as well. Trench the ceiling further down and get a big line in place to cut it off. There was a good article about this technique in Firehouse or F.E., can’t remember which…
Silver - 06/05/09 - 00:35

Dang it…one more thing, how about apparatus placement? This pic shows excellent truck placement, as the two ladders were able to get side “A” and the first due engine pulled far away to make room. Remember, you can add hose…you can’t add ladder.
Silver - 06/05/09 - 00:39

The ground ladders were used to VENT the upper floor windows in order to aim the aerial master streams into Division 2. No one was in need of egress because they simply were not up there. The roof had vented itself so there was no need for vertical ventilation. The TRUSSES in the roof system negated an interior attack. We quickly searched and backed out. No need to lose personnel to a lightweight construction building with no civilian life safety involved. When we arrived there was fire in Division 1, 2, and attic on the “C” side. Please do not Monday moring quarterback a call that you were not involved in. I am very proud of all companies who operated at the scene and I am glad that we KEPT the fire to the original units that it started in. Thanks for defending us Silver!
RLP - 06/05/09 - 00:43

I didn’t read the first posters comment as monday morning quarterbacking, so much as possibly trying to use the photogragh for a ladder training discussion. So FF I will answer your question based on that thought process.

No, they are not placed in the correct place or position to be used as a secondary means of egress. They should be placed just below the windown sill with the butt kicked out a further than normal for climbing. This will allow for interior FF’s to do an emergency bailout if need be. The ff’s that place those ladders should also radio command or the interior crews to let them know that a secondary means of egress has been established, and on what side of the building they are placed. If there is just one ladder thrown then you might want to add that it is closest to a particular corner.

On a side note I want to applaud the driver of the first due eng for leaving lots of room for that ladder.
Mike - 06/05/09 - 10:39

I thought the fire went well. I was there for a little while. Yes the ladder nozzle on the stick had problems and would not operate correctly. Operator had to move the entire ladder to move nozzle and it was stuck on a straight stream.
Apex Batt Chief - 06/05/09 - 14:57

The end result of this fire was there were no injuries and there was a building standing. I think they did a great job and a good fire stop. I have seen buildings like this that you can throw them in the middle of the atlantic ocean and they will not go out. Good job guys!!!
firebugg - 06/05/09 - 17:12

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