Firefighters respond to 2 structure fires
by James Phillips
Mar 08, 2013 | 2397 views | 0 0 comments | 4 4 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Members of the Jasper Fire Department were stretched thin Thursday morning when two structure fires broke out at the same time.

Firefighters responded to a call around 2:20 a.m. of a blaze at an abandoned home in the 1900 block of 13th Avenue in west Jasper. Capt. David Clark said the structure was fully involved when firefighters arrived on the scene.

“When we have a fully involved structure fire, it takes up pretty much all of our resources,” Clark said.

A short time after their arrival at the abandoned home fire, another call was received concerning a structure fire at the 2700 block of Florida Avenue. Clark described the second house fire as well involved.

“The house was a duplex and the people in the house noticed it was on fire,” he said.

The crew at the fire on 13th Avenue was forced to split in half to cover the Florida Avenue fire, Clark said.

“The guys did an excellent job,” he said. “One structure fire is a tough situation, but having two at the same time is a very difficult situation.”

Jasper fire crews were on the scene of both fires until around 7:30 a.m. Regional Paramedical Servies also responded to the fires.

The two Thursday morning fires mark three structure fires in six days Jasper firefighters have battled. A fire late Friday night on Old Tuscaloosa Road had members of the fire department out for more than six hours. Clark said it was also an abandoned home. Members of the Saragossa Fire Department were called for assistance.

“The hydrant locations were compromised, so we called them to help with a tanker system,” he said.

Clark said the Old Tuscaloosa Road fire and the fire in west Jasper are both considered suspicious.

“Both structures were abandoned and had no utilities hooked up to them,” he said. “We have a good idea that they were both arson.”

Jasper firefighters have responded to 10 structure fires in 2013.

“It’s hard to say if that is about average,” Clark said.

Clark did say structure fires make up about 15 percent of the department’s 2,000 runs each year.