03/25/10 153 W, 2 I - + 11 - 7 Today's Major Fire in Pittsboro

WRAL played the wow footage of the day in their 6:00 p.m. broadcast, with live aerial images of the Chatham County courthouse building fire in Pittsboro. The three-story structure in the center of town, which dates to 1881, is surrounded by scaffolding due to renovations. Witnesses started seeing smoke in the area about 4:15 p.m., and the fire was reported about 4:45 p.m. Read the WRAL story.

WRAL photos

Mutual aid departments in Chatham County have included Goldston, Moncure, North Chatham (that's their tower), Siler City (that's their ladder), and Silk Hope, plus Deep River and West Sanford in Lee County, and Parkwood in Durham County (for tankers). Who else? Wind gusts (high) and water pressure (low) have been factors, we're heard. Other coverage includes the News & Observer (and an excellent photo from John Rottet) and WTVD.

John Rottet/News & Observer photo

Apex Tanker 1 for water shuttle, Fairview Engine 8 coverage at North Chatham Station 1, Apex Engine 2 coverage at Moncure
Apex Batt Chief - 03/25/10 - 21:13

WRAL and WTVD had live coverage on this from 5 to 6:30. Now that is my kind of news cast. It looked like they were having severe water problems. Can anyone advise?
marcus - 03/25/10 - 21:42

Marcus I agree with you.

Anyone know what size water lines they have in that area and also how many alarms was this fire? 3 Maybe?
Buckwheat - 03/25/10 - 22:55

The Pittsboro FD site contains a short history section that notes a catastrophic fire in the late 1920s destroyed the old county courthouse, as well as several businesses in town. This fire and the addition of a water system in 1936 initiated the formal organization of the fire department. Wonder if that courthouse building is the same one that burned last night? Did they rebuild? Relocate to an equally older structure?
Legeros - 03/26/10 - 07:00

Okay, Google finds a bit of history. The county was formed in 1771. The first courthouse was a frame building on a farm, in the supposed geographic center of the county. Second was built in or after 1787 in Pittsboro, in a wood building a half-mile north of the old one. It was replaced in 1843 with the supposed first brick building in the county. It was replaced in 1881 on the site of the old one. It appears to have been a one-story building, and underwent major renovations in the 1930s. Perhaps as a result of the fire? No, the late 1920s fire must have destroyed the 1787 structure, right? This added a one-story addition to the ground floor. The interior was extensively remodeled in 1959. http://www.nccourts.org/County/Chatham/D..
Legeros - 03/26/10 - 07:03

Finally, some additional incident details were logged at comments on Firegeezer’s blog, http://firegeezer.com/2010/03/25/carolin..
Legeros - 03/26/10 - 07:11

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