MEDIA RELEASE – Residential Structure Fire: 18 Berryhill Rd.

MEDIA RELEASE – Residential Structure Fire: 18 Berryhill Rd.

October 24, 2012

Residential Structure Fire:  18 Berryhill Road

At approximately 05:24 am Wednesday, October 24th, the Irmo Fire District was notified of a possible apartment fire at the above address in the Stoney Creek Apartment neighborhood.  At approximately 5:33 am the first arriving Irmo Fire unit reported moderate to heavy fire and smoke coming from the first floor and front of building number 18 with a report of all occupants successfully evacuated.  Irmo Ladder 1, Engine 1, Engine 2, Battalion 1, Fire 2 and Marshal 1 responded with automatic aid response from Lexington County Engine 301 as well as Columbia Engine 6, Engine 16, Rescue 2, Rescue 1, Battalion 2 and their Division Chief.

Fire personnel were advised by occupants of the building that initially the fire had been very small and on the front porch of apartment C in the front of the building.  The fire had developed and spread quickly and extended into a second floor apartment and the attic space over additional apartments before it was contained.  At approximately 6:48 am this fire was reported under control.  There were no reported injuries.

The Red Cross was contacted and they responded and offered relocation assistance to all displaced occupants.

Property management arrived on scene and secured the property for further review.  Dollar loss amounts have not as of yet been determined by the property insurance carrier.

Based on witness statements and a preliminary review of the scene it has been confirmed that the fire started in a corner of the front porch area of apartment 18-C.  The cause has not been specifically determined and remains under investigation.  As with any residential structure fire it is important to note that one or two sprinkler heads would have contained this fire and possibly put it out prior to arrival of the fire department with very little subsequent damage from fire, smoke or water.  This fire damaged 6 units and required the relocation of 10 adults and one child.  This building was constructed prior to any requirements for sprinkler systems in this type of structure.

Chief Investigator Jeff Allen,

Irmo Fire District

About Jeff Allen:  Serving with the Irmo Fire District for the past 18 years, Jeff teaches arson classes at the SC Criminal Justice and State Fire Academies and in many locations throughout South Carolina and the United States and is widely recognized by Public Safety Agencies for his knowledge and commitment pertaining to fire/arson investigation and fire code issues.  Jeff is a certified Police Officer and his duties include all Criminal Investigations and Code Enforcement for the Fire District’s jurisdiction.             

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