ENOSBURG FALLS – On Friday, July 31, emergency crews responded to a fire at a residence above the Enosburg Meat Market & Custom Shop building located at 27 Bismark Street in Enosburg Falls. According to the incident commander, Assistant Fire Chief Tom Shover from the Enosburgh Fire Department, two adult females and at least two children were caught in the blaze but none were injured.
Inside the building, smoke had filled the hallways forcing the occupants of the residence onto the roof. The two adult females had already passed the children down to bystanders but rescue teams using extension ladders were required to assist the women from the roof.
In addition to the Enosburgh Falls volunteers, five departments from Bakersfield, Berkshire, Franklin, Richford and Sheldon were also dispatched to the scene. “It took ten to fifteen minutes to knock down the fire,” says Shover who was present on the scene and personally assisted with the rescue of the remaining occupants.
Shover has been with the Enosburg Fire Department for 45 years.
EMS was also present on the scene, but neither occupants nor emergency workers sustained injuries during the ordeal. According to Enosburg Falls EMS personnel who responded to the fire, their primary role was to rehab fire fighters by checking their blood oxygen levels and heart rate and ensuring the continued safety of those working the fire and its aftermath.
Shover notes, “the cause of fire is undetermined.” What is known, according to Shover, is that the fire began in the bathroom which he described as “gutted.” He went on to say “the smoke and water damage continued into the hallway and kitchen” and that “insurance totaled the upstairs.” He also reiterated a few keys to fire safety emphasizing the importance of emergency preparation by having working smoke alarms and an escape route.
Main Street business owners and their patrons looked on as the fire and rescue workers began clean-up. In a show of thanks for the emergency responders prompt and professional work, Lucille Stanhope, a waitress from a nearby restaurant, Eats of Enosburgh, brought a plate of donuts to the emergency crew responders.
In a Facebook post dated August 1, 2015, the Chief of the Enosburgh Fire Department, Mark LaRose, issued a brief statement saying that “no cause has been found, [the fire] is still under investigation by the Vermont State Police Arson Division.” He went on to say, “Good job to all Tom, Cody for the rescue, Pete, David, Michael, Cody for initial entry and a good stop. A very big THANK YOU to all the Mutual Aid Departments…”
By Brielle King