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We hope you enjoy this abbreviated version of the

Frankenmuth News

Serving Frankenmuth Since 1906

Vol. 112 No. 42- In our 112th year!

Wednesday, April 25, 2018


SMOLDERING CHARCOAL ASHES . . . are believed to be the cause of a structure fire at 204 Reif Street last Sunday afternoon. the Frankenmuth fire Department responded to the call at 4:44pm and upon arrival, saw flames from the garage side of the home. No one was injured.

Smoldering charcoal ashes to blame for house fire

    A charcoal grill is believed to be the cause of a Sunday afternoon house fire in the City of Frankenmuth.

 The Frankenmuth Fire Department responded to the call in the 200 block of Reif Street around 4:44pm on Sunday, April 22. Upon arrival, the crew from Engine No. 1 found a single-family ranch-style home with flames visible from the garage side and heavy smoke pouring from the structure’s attic space.

  An alert passerby noticed the fire and called 911, just about the same time as nearby FFD Crew Leader Eric MacKinnon noticed smoke coming from his neighbor’s home as he was working in his rear yard,” Kerns said.

 According to FFD Chief Phil Kerns, it appears that hot charcoal from a grill started a small storage cabinet on fire next to the home and it spread into the attic. The ashes had been dumped into a bucket but were still smoldering.

  Firefighters quickly extinguished the exterior fire and accessed the attic space above the garage and house that was well involved with fire spreading south from the garage end on the north side.

    The home sustained smoke damage and the attached garage and attic suffered fire damage. No one was home at the time of the reported fire and no one was injured at the scene.

  “The structure appears intact. It suffered smoke damage throughout and the attached garage suffered heavy fire, smoke and water damage,” Kerns said.

  Kerns the fire was so hot that the adjacent home suffered some damage.

  “The home next door had some thermal activity. There was some siding wrinkled and the window blinds inside the home melted,” Kerns added.

  Kerns estimated the preliminary dollar damage amount to be around $70,000. Less than 2,000 gallons of water was used from nearby hydrants.

  A total of 26 FFD personnel reported for the alarm and the local firefighters were assisted by the Frankenmuth Police Department, Mobile Medical Response and Birch Run Fire Department. The units cleared the scene around 7pm.

  Kerns warns residents, with grilling season here, to make sure all charcoal ashes are thoroughly drenched with water.

  “I’ve seen ashes re-ignite long, long, long after they’ve been cleared out. It just takes a little wind to kick them up again,” Kerns said.

  At 5:51 pm Monday, April 23, the FFD responded to a woods and grass fire on Hart Road, just north of Frankenmuth Road.

  According to FFD Captain Matt Vasicek, an area land owner was burning ditch banks and the fire spread to a nearby grassy area and into an adjoining woodlot.

  Although contained, local firefighters spent over an hour extinguishing downed logs and brush piles along the wood line that had numerous hot spots. Brush 7, Utility 6, Engine 1 and Tender 5 responded with 11 fire personnel. A total of 22 reported to the station and the department cleared by 7:30pm.

  Earlier in the week, shortly before 9:30pm Wednesday, April 18, the FFD was called to a vehicle fire with car close to a residence in the 400 block of Keinath Drive.

  An alert neighbor spotted the fire, called 911, and used a fire extinguisher as an initial attack. Mackinnon said the fire was contained to the vehicle.

  “His actions kept the fire from spreading from the car,” Kerns noted. “The nearby house was not damaged.”

  The older style Buick was a total loss due to heavy damage to the engine compartment. Engines 1 and 2 responded with 10 firefighters and cleared 45 minutes later. Sixteen personnel reported to the station.

  As of press time, the FFD has responded to 31 calls for service in 2018.


(c) 2006 Frankenmuth News