04/08/11 160 W, 1 I - + 7 - 0 Four Homes Burn in Charlotte

WSCO is one of many news outlets reporting on this morning's multi-home fire in Cornelius, which is outside Charlotte, which is more recognizable and thus the location listed in this blog posting. (Though maybe everyone also knows where Cornelius is!) Two homes destroyed, two others damaged. Three families displaced, as one was vacant.

WNCN has a few photos, in addition to the raw footage from WSCO. Witnesses said the wind spread the flames, though proximity was certainly a mitigating factor. Notes the WBTV report, the buildings were built "California-style," which means very close together. Guess that applies to quite a few residential neighborhoods in these parts. Just a little wind and/or high heat, and the second (and third and fourth) structure catches.

Sunday update. Reader Jeff Silver sends this picture, seen off O'Kelly Chapel Road, at Carolina Preserve and Amberly. Both structures with vinyl siding.

A result of greedy government and planning departments. Pack as many as you can in a small area to get every tax cent possible. Then the FD’s have to deal with this crap.
ff - 04/08/11 - 08:47

Crazy this story is up; I was just driving down O’Kelly Chapel Rd. in Cary/Durham and there’s a 55 & over housing development going up. The houses are all ranch/patio homes, but they are sooooo close together and appear to be vinyl siding. I still can’t believe they are allowed to put them that close. I’ll send Mikey L. a pic if I go by there later today. I was thinking to myself, if the CFD catches a fire over here, they better get in there quickly or they’ll burn two for one!
Silver - 04/08/11 - 10:32

By standards around here those homes aren’t so close together, look like they are 15+ feet apart.. It’s as Silver said, with vinyl they shouldn’t be so close. These homes would have been fine with almost anything other than vinyl.
D.Cates - 04/08/11 - 13:01

There are developments like that everywhere now. Cornelius isn’t the only ones who burn more than one at a time. We have had some exposure issues here in Wake county just like that. I guess that’s why you are seeing departments like Morrisville and Apex with the preconnected blitz nozzels.
911 - 04/08/11 - 21:02

Yup, kudos to them for changing up their tactics to adapt to some of their territory. RFD 15 Engine is also experimenting with one, from what I’ve been told.
Silver - 04/08/11 - 22:38

They look like they would be nice for water curtains. They must work well for them.
911 - 04/09/11 - 12:15

Well, water curtains are not really effective exposure protection, but, having the option to be able to put 500 gpm’s into operatoon fast would be nice. Won’t be practical all the time, but has its’ place if you ask me.

Silver - 04/09/11 - 13:50

Updated with pic from Silver.
Legeros - 04/10/11 - 21:33

Now that is close…. If you’re gonna be that close you might as well have a town house with less exterior maintenance and upkeep!
D.Cates - 04/10/11 - 23:09

Aint that the truth!!
911 - 04/12/11 - 08:48

There is a neighborhood of 2 unit town homes just like the picture above in Archer Lodge, just outside of Clayton. This has been a topic of discussion in our training meetings. If you stand between each unit and hold your arms out beside you, fingertips touch both town homes. If one were to burn, you can plan on seeing a big orange glow toward the upper west side of JoCo.
TTaylor - 04/12/11 - 10:02

Silver – Water curtains are not really effective exposure protection,,,,lmao. I have to work with you now and then. Now you should know why I do not listen to you.
sametheman - 04/12/11 - 21:56

On that note, how about doing me a favor and let me know who you are so I know not to waste my breath on someone that doesn’t want to learn. I could care less what you say, direct water application is the best form of protecting an exposure. Open your mind up a little, you’d be amazed what it might soak up.
Silver - 04/12/11 - 22:20

Here’s some reading for you “same”. Do some research and learn about your job; http://www.firehouse.com/forums/showthre..
Silver - 04/13/11 - 12:55

What is on that link may be true, however you have to be careful not to rely on forums as true research.
CJ - 04/13/11 - 19:24

Sametheman, I doubt you work for Raleigh… if you do I (we) are embarrassed.
Embarrassed - 04/13/11 - 20:15

Do your research CJ. While I do agree that not everything found on the world wide web is true, I still haven’t found anywhere saying that a “water curtain” should be considered effective exposure protection, or “hey, we used a water curtain and man it worked awesome”.

It is an outdated tactic that was more than likely taught from an old IFSTA manual. Times have changed, people have done the research, the best way to cool an exposure (thus protecting it) is by direct water application.
Silver - 04/13/11 - 20:28

@Embarrassed; we’ll never, ever know!!!
Silver - 04/13/11 - 20:29

CJ, does this convince you now or what?
Silver - 04/13/11 - 20:44

It’s fact, water does not absorb radiant heat as once thought, maybe only about 15%. The rest of the heat travels right through; you cool the surfaces of the exposed, simple as that.
Silver - 04/13/11 - 20:46

As much as i hate to say it, Silver is exactly right (lol). Water curtains only work on embers and convected heat. They will do absolutley nothing for radient heat, Fire behavoir 101. I remember a couple of vollie houses 15yrs ago had water curtain appliances used to put between houses. Needless to say i have never seen any since.
gen3fire - 04/14/11 - 17:48

Darn KC, always gotta start off with that? I figured we were past that point by now!! Thanks for the support, just another anonymous blogger relying on antiquated tactics and a corney attempt at getting a jab in.

The silence is golden.
Silver - 04/14/11 - 18:33

Silver, I believe you have great ideas and do well at your job but you shouldn’t get your blood pressure up when these people jump on you. They are doing this because they want to see your reaction. You are the blogger of all bloggers and aren’t affraid of speaking your mind. These folks have been jabbing you to death a hole lot lately but just ignore them. Mikey’s blog wasn’t designed for such. And we can’t discuss when it escalades into Mike having to lock the article. You share your knowledge with people who want to learn and not the idiots that want to bash you.
JG - 04/14/11 - 21:55

Hey just out of curiosity, how many calls did Wake Forest Fire run last year?
911 - 04/14/11 - 21:57

@JG; nah, it doesn’t bother me Brother. People will jab and jab, and that’s fine. I enjoy the fact that Mike has put together a great site for us to discuss things, especially when it comes to strategy and tactics. We’ve needed something like this in this area for the longest time, and now we finally have it.

It would be great though, for us to come on here and be able to just have decent debates without people getting their panties in a bunch or take offense. It’s about making us all operate better and be certain we go home at the end of or tour. There are a certain few that come here for the right reasons, and after the debating and discussing is over, if i saw them tomorrow I’d laugh and joke with them about whatever. Nothing we reasonably debate here is taken personally. I know what you’re saying, but please believe me when I tell you, I’ve been doing this long enough to not lose sleep over the spineless. Mikey could just erase their douchey post, but I understand why he leaves them up.

Stay safe…..
Silver - 04/14/11 - 23:49

@ 911-

Not sure why it matters here in this discussion, but Wake Forest Fire ran just over 2600 calls last year.
Wayne - 04/15/11 - 06:53

What challenges will these neighborhoods present in 10-15 years? Now, most are new and in very good condition. Give it time and the neighborhood begins to “age”. To be politically correct, the occupants then are likely to be less concerned with living with fire safety. We begin to find more fires in the structures and the likelihood of neighborhood conflagrations definitely increases. I think about those residences that were “premier” years ago, but now, not so much.
Chris - 04/15/11 - 16:56

It doesn’t have anything to do with this article but I fiqured someone would let me know. I checked their web site but it hasnt been updated in a while.
911 - 04/15/11 - 20:54

Remember personal info?

/ Textile

Comment moderation is enabled on this site. This means that your comment will not be visible on this site until it has been approved by an editor.

To prevent spam we require you to answer this silly question

  (Register your username / Log in)

Hide email:

Small print: All html tags except <b> and <i> will be removed from your comment. You can make links by just typing the url or mail-address.