Central cities fire departments respond to residential fire

A rapid response snuffed the fire before it could grow

Firefighters rapidly responded and neutralized a nascent residential fire in Cosmopolis Monday morning before it could get out of hand.

The call came in just before 8:30 a.m., said Battalion Chief Dave Swinheart of the Aberdeen Fire Department.

“At the time we had three other calls going in, two in the city and one in North River,” Swinheart said in an interview. “It came out as a structure fire, large amounts of smoke with a fire alarm sounding.”

Initial reports were that the 77-year-old resident had mobility issues, Swinheart said.

“She was out of the structure by the time we got there,” Swinheart said. “Both Cosi and Aberdeen police assisted.”

Firefighters from Hoquiam and Aberdeen arriving on the scene immediately tackled the fire, Swinheart said.

“The first crew went in for fire attack. Put the fire out immediately, aired the place out,” Swinheart said. “The house is completely occupiable. She’ll be able to resume residence immediately.”

A rapid call-in meant the departments were able to get in and knock down the fire before it had the chance to grow, Swinheart said. Damage was minimal, confined to the room of origin, Swinheart said.

“It’s just very lucky we got there so early. The fire was small when we got called. We were able to put it out with minimal to no damage,” Swinheart said. “Had it been a few more minutes, it could have been more significant.”

The fire is an example of the departmental interoperability that will be that much more effective under the proposed regional fire authority, Swinheart said, as the issue goes to a ballot once more next month. Hoquiam and Aberdeen departments responded jointly to the fire, during a time of day where volunteers from Cosmopolis where the fire occurred are hard-pressed to respond.

“It’s a perfect example of having multiple calls going and being able to facilitate a proper fire response,” Swinheart said. “Even though we had three other calls going on, we were able to deal with this with no other outside organizations.”

Contact reporter Michael S. Lockett at 757-621-1197 or mlockett@thedailyworld.com.