No Injuries in House Fire on West Main

Unofficial structural damage estimate at $20,000

A house fire on West Main Street was extinquished quickly by the Thursday night.

Kent Fire Lt. Dave Moore said the department was called to 738 W. Main St. at 7:56 p.m. with reports that someone was possibly trapped in a second floor apartment.

"There was heavy smoke and fire showing from the second floor in the kitchen area along the wall," Moore said. "We entered the apartment and found it empty."

Moore said firefighters had the blaze extinguished within 15 to 20 minutes.

"It was up in the wall, so that was a little tricky," he said.

Moore said he estimated structural damage alone at $20,000 due to the ceiling and wall firefighters had to remove to reach the fire.

Area fire departments from neighboring communities provided mutual aid, including Streetsboro, Mantua, Stow, Brimfield, Ravenna and Ravenna Township.

Gary Lane August 24, 2012 at 04:58 AM
Mr. Kuhar, That question comes up alot. There are a few reasons that this takes place, the biggest of which is that even when the fire seems to be under control, things can go bad. The house tonight is what is referred to as Balloon Frame construction. In Balloon Frame construction, there is a void space that runs from the basement to the roof, unimpeded by fire stops. It is very hard to get these fires under control due to rapid fire spread. We also had a report of possibly someone still trapped on the 3rd floor. That means we need extra help doing all of the normal things required (stretch hoselines, force entry, connect to a hydrant, deploy ladders, etc...) plus search for a victim. It is exhausting work and we only have a limited supply of breathing air in our SCBA (self contained breathing apparatus) that lasts sometimes less than 15 minutes. Having multiple resources showing up allows a constant supply of fresh men ready to work. Having these extra resources available is also very helpful if we have another emergency call come in. This happened during the fire tonight and it was handled by a squad from Ravenna Twp. Right before the fire came in, we had 4 back-to-back ambulance calls which we handled. Im sure you can see how quickly things can go bad when we dont have the help available. Thanks for checking in on us! I will be at the firehouse on Sunday for a 24 hour shift. Please feel free to stop in if you want to talk about anything else! Take care. -Gary Lane
Kasha Legeza August 24, 2012 at 05:17 AM
Wow, Gary Lane, much appreciation for the thorough explanation! I'll bet the big turnout was a huge relief not only for that home's owner and occupants, but also for those in adjacent houses.Again, if there's ever a fire at my house I want as many of you guys and your neighboring brethren on hand as possible, lol! And Matt, thanks for the speedy story post. I think the whole town had to be curious after hearing so many sirens!
Holly Schweitzer August 24, 2012 at 10:00 AM
Gary, I am glad you were able to clear up the confusion some people had. Having watched the whole scene unfold, I was very impressed with how quickly and calmly you got the situation under control. It was amazing to watch how well you worked together, and I am glad we have neighboring towns and cities who can send in their cavalry when needed. Keep up the good work! And thank you for always being there when we need you.
Helen August 24, 2012 at 11:42 AM
Thank God for our firemen, police and other emergency workers!
Matt Fredmonsky August 24, 2012 at 01:15 PM
Thanks to Gary for that explanation. For those who don't know, Gary is a member of the Kent Fire Department. Keep up the good work.


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