Couple Displaced After Their Dodgingtown Home Damaged By Fire
A single-family house on Brookwood Drive in Dodgingtown was damaged on Thursday, January 9, by an apparently accidental fire, which started while the two people who live there were away from home, according to Dodgingtown Volunteer Fire Company Chief Steve Murphy.
When the couple returned home to the house at 5 Brookwood Drive at about 7:42 pm, both they and a neighbor noticed that there was smoke emanating from the building, so they alerted firefighters of the situation. The 1.1-acre lot holds a raised-ranch house with attached garage that was constructed in 1968. Brookwood Drive is a loop road that extends from Poorhouse Road.
Chief Murphy said there were no injuries. There were no pets.
The blaze caused at least $50,000 worth of property damage, he estimated. The property is insured for loss. The Red Cross found temporary lodgings for the two people who live there as part of its assistance to the victims, he said.
Chief Murphy also is a deputy fire marshal, so he investigates the causes of such fires. Chief Murphy told The Newtown Bee on Friday morning that he and Fire Marshal Rich Frampton would return top the Brookwood Drive house to further probe the blaze in seeking its exact cause.
Evidence at the scene indicated that the fire started near a basement boiler that is used as part of an oil-fired heating system, Chief Murphy said. The flames traveled vertically, following the chimney upward until reaching the attic, he said.
In addition to Dodgingtown firefighters, volunteer firefighters from Botsford, Hawleyville, Hook & Ladder, and Sandy Hook were dispatched. About 35 volunteer firefighters responded.
Firefighters, who arrived in eight fire trucks, had the fire under control in about 15 minutes using water carried on tankers, after which they did an hour of fire overhaul work, thoroughly checking for any fire-related problems, according to Chief Murphy.
Also, Stepney firefighters went to the Botsford firehouse and Southbury firefighters went to the Sandy Hook main station to provide backup fire coverage through the mutual aid system.
Chief Murphy said that although it is unfortunate that a fire occurred, the damage caused by the blaze is not as extensive as it might have been. The house, however, is not habitable and it likely will be several months before the two people who live there can return to a rehabilitated dwelling, he said.
“[The damage is] not as bad as it could have been...It’s fixable,” he said. “The contents are salvageable,” he added.