337 N. Westminster Dr. -- Garage Fire
October 18, 2011
On Monday, October 17, 2011 at 10:31 p.m., the Palatine Fire Department received the report of smoke in the basement at 337 N. Westminster Dr. in Palatine. The first fire department units arrived five minutes later and found nothing showing from the exterior of the two-story single family home with the residents waiting outside, who also reported heavier smoke in the garage. Crews from the Palatine Fire Department, assisted by crews from the Palatine Rural Fire Protection District entered the home and confirmed heavy smoke in the garage. The overhead door was opened to allow the firefighters to attack the fire they found in the garage with a 1 ¾” hoseline. While the fire was attacked in the garage, other crews provided a water supply, searched the house for any fire extension and pulled a second hoseline. 21 firefighters from the two fire departments staffing two engines, two ladder trucks, two ambulances, one rescue squad, and one shift commander operated at this incident. The Palatine Police Department also responded to the incident. There were no injuries to occupants or firefighters, and the fire damage was confined to contents of the garage and to one of the two cars that were parked in it. Damage, initially estimated at $5,000.00, was minimized by the homeowner’s quick action in calling the fire department at the first notice of smoke in the house, allowing for the fire to be fought while still in an early stage. The fire was determined to be accidental in nature, having been caused by improper disposal of rags that had been used for wood finishing earlier in the day. The house remained tenable by the occupants.
The Palatine Fire Department would like to emphasize the importance of properly disposing (in a sealed, closed metal container) of any rags used for painting or other finishing, and of the value of having working smoke detectors in the residence. If you see or smell smoke in any building, call the fire department immediately