May 14, 2015 – Five firefighters suffered minor injuries at a house fire in the Kentlands area of Gaithersburg after the roof and part of the second floor ceiling collapsed while they were working to extinguish the fire. RVFD and MCFRS units were dispatched to a reported house fire on Leeks Lot Way at about 1am. First arriving units reported heavy fire showing from the attic and roof. Montgomery County emergency communications sent the rapid intervention dispatch. A second alarm was also requested.
Command ordered an external attack using master stream and hand lines to control the fire before attempting an interior attack. T731 utilized their aerial ladder pipe to flow water to the roof. After darkening the fire, crews entered the structure for an interior attack. While working on the second floor, the fire-damaged roof collapsed into the attic and caused a partial collapse of the second floor ceiling. Interior crews were hit by falling debris and the division supervisor was trapped under a beam. The division supervisor called a mayday on himself. Command ordered the rapid intervention group to effect a rescue. Other units on the second floor were able to clear the debris and free the trapped firefighter. All personnel were removed from the structure and the mayday was cleared quickly. Crews then continued to fight the fire, which was brought under control within 30 minutes.
The injured firefighters were evaluated by EMS crews on the scene and transported to a local hospital for evaluation. All were treated and released with minor injuries.
The cause of the fire is reported to be from a fire in the fireplace which caused a chimney fire that extended to the roof and then attic. The home also suffered extensive water damage. The lone occupant of the house was able to escape without injury.
Units responding: E731, E753, E708, E732, E722, T731, AT708, RS729, M731, BC703, BC705, VDOC (C703F), DOC, S700, EMS700
Rapid intervention: AT703, T734, RS703, M708B
Second Alarm: E729, E734, E723, E728, AT729, AT723, AR733, CT708, C703C, Fire Chief 700, Volunteer Chief 700