Chimney Fire on Bark Hill Road
By Assistant Chief Christopher Harris
March 15, 2017

Structure Alarm 8-9. At 12:47 hrs., Engine 81, Engine 101, Ladder 5 and Medic 89 were dispatched for a chimney fire at 4494 Bark Hill Road (Sergeant 8-2’s residence - C. Keeney). Captain 8 (T. Marble) was first to arrive and advised of a 2 story, single family structure with nothing evident. After a quick investigation, it was confirmed that there was an active chimney fire in a stainless steel stove pipe and he established “Bark Hill Road Command”.

Engine 81 and Engine/Tanker 84 arrived and crews laddered the roof to check the location of the fire in the pipe. It was quickly determined that a fire was active about 2/3’s of the way up the pipe. A “chimney bomb” was used to attempt to extinguish the fire. A thermal imager was used inside to determine extension, but nothing was found. Ladder 5 was placed in-service.

Crews then extinguished the fire in the woodstove and the firebox was cleaned out. At this point, it was evident that there was still fire in the chimney, so the pipe from the woodstove into the wall was removed. Debris at the base of the chimney pipe was still burning. It was extinguished and removed.

As crews began to finish cleaning up, smoke began to fill the room. Crews immediately began removing wall material near the adjacent staircase and closet. Again, use of the thermal imager found negative results on the interior, however, when used outside, higher temperatures (77 degrees vs 32 degrees) were found in the wall material near the exterior chimney. Crews removed the exterior materials and found that conductive heat had set wood siding on fire between the masonry chimney and log walls. The material was removed and the fire completely extinguished.

No one was injured and the cause of the fire is listed as accidental. Units cleared the scene by 14:33 hrs.

Units: E-81, E/T-84, M-89, Capt. 8 (Union Bridge); E-101 (New Windsor); Ladder 5 (Taneytown)