Nikiski firefighters save trailer home after failed try to thaw pipes

Posted: Thursday, January 08, 2004

Nikiski firefighters managed to save part of a single-family trailer home that apparently caught fire Tuesday evening as residents were trying to thaw frozen pipes beneath the structure.

Two people suffered from minor smoke inhalation, but refused medical treatment.

Firefighters received a call at 9:58 p.m. and responded to the home off Industrial Avenue with one fire engine, two tankers, a rescue truck and an ambulance. A tanker from the Kenai Fire Department also responded.

Initially, the firefighters attacked the fire from inside the trailer, but after 15 minutes, observed part of the roof collapse in the center of the structure, according to Assistant Nikiski Fire Chief Warren Isham.

They then switched strategy to an exterior attack as the roof continued to collapse.

"The estimated loss to the structure is $50,000," Isham said.

He did not have an estimate on the value of the contents.

Larry Jameson, Phyllis Dick-inson and two children were in the home when the fire started and were alerted by smoke detectors in time to flee to safety.

Isham said they had been thawing frozen pipes with a space heater, which apparently ignited materials underneath the trailer.

Firefighters first arrived on the scene eight minutes after receiving the call and left the location at 2:22 a.m. after the fire was out.

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