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Weekend fires keep crews busy

By Caitlin Rickard crickard@lebanondemocrat.com • Dec 17, 2015 at 5:56 PM

Lebanon firefighters stayed busy over the weekend, on Saturday in particular, with three different fires cropping up within a few hours.

According to Assistant fire Chief Jason Baird, the first fire broke out at TRW around 3 a.m. but was confined to a flue from a machine that extended through the roof.

Baird said only contents within the flue caught fire and they were able to keep the flames contained to the machine itself and through the flue.

“It took people on the ground and the roof to get it extinguished,” Baird said. “The guys were on top of it and managed the scene really fast.”

Baird said they still had units at TRW when they got their second fire report.

The reported fire was caused due to a single-vehicle accident on Interstate 40 where the vehicle left the roadway on the eastbound exit ramp at the South Hartmann Drive exit and caught fire, Baird said.

Baird said the wreck and ensuing fire occurred around the time it started snowing and the roads started to get slick.

According to Baird, the driver tried to take the exit but didn’t make the turn and went off of a ditch and into a field. He said the vehicle was about 200 feet off of the roadway.

Baird said firefighters got the fire extinguished “pretty quick” and everything “went smooth.”

He said no one was injured and the passengers got out of the vehicle before it caught fire.

The third fire was a house fire reported around 8:50 a.m. after a 911 call reported a fire at 312 Cleveland Ave. with an elderly couple inside.

Officers were on the scene within two minutes and were able to get the occupants out of the home.

“Our officers arrived very quickly and were able to assist three people in escaping from the home. It was a great job by our officers,” Lebanon police Chief Scott Bowen said. “First response by our officers is so important in these cases.”

Lebanon firefighters arrived three minutes later and extinguished the fire.

Baird said that upon arrival all occupants of the home had gotten out and responders then worked to put the fire out and save property.

“We hit it quick and were able to contain it to the one room and it’s contents,” Baird said.

Baird said only contents of the living room were lost.

“We were able to save some things but the whole rest of the house is in really good shape, there was just some smoke damage,” Baird said. “It could have been serious.”

Baird said a man inside the home heard the smoke detector go off and found the couch in the living room on fire. He said the man pulled the couch to the middle of the room to avoid the fire spreading and got the family out. He said he also attempted to extinguish the fire himself, but it grew too quickly.

Baird said one occupant of the house was transported non-emergency as a precaution.

Wilson Emergency Management Agency and Middle Tennessee Electric crews were both were dispatched to the scene.

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